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ADHD and the Holidays

If you, your spouse or your child has ADHD, the key to a calmer more enjoyable holiday is to create traditions that suit your lifestyles. No single solution will fit everyone, but here are some suggestions to help create calm instead of adding to the chaos.

  1. Be flexible. Create holiday patterns that suit the needs of your family
  2. Hold a family meeting. Discuss what traditions are important to each of you and do away with the rest.
  3. Ask for help. The holidays should be a family affair.
  4. Look for creative solutions. This might include buying a smaller tree to decorate, going out to dinner, having a pot luck instead of fixing everything yourself or bringing two families together to celebrate the holidays.
  5. Don't give in to unreasonable demands. If you or your children with ADHD are exhausted by expectations that you fly home for the holidays, or that you visit with multiple relatives, let them know that this is stressful for you. Make sure you give your family early notice of the change in plans this year.
  6. Try to keep to your familiar routine even when visiting. Make sure your child with ADHD continues to take his or her medicine on schedule and that bedtime stays as close as possible to normal.
  7. Plan ahead. Shop early and avoid taking a tired child with ADHD with you.
  8. Order gifts. Use mail order or the Internet. Free shipping is usually found on many Web sites during the holidays.


This information was last updated on: 11/21/2012

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