How to help your child stop procrastinating (It works for adults too!)

by Shaya Kass, PhD

"The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and then starting on the first one." -Mark Twain

Now that your child is on summer vacation, they might have a summer reading assignment. The question is how long should you allow your child to wait before they get started. This is true for projects during school as well. It also might apply to getting ready for life events like a confirmation or bar- or bat mitzvah. So how can you help your child overcome procrastination?

Firstly, whatever you do, whether it is one of my suggestions or some other idea, make sure you do it in a loving manner. Chances are, your child is already a little nervous, anxious or annoyed about the project. If you come in and start dictating a plan of action, the level of tension may only rise.

The first strategy I want to share with you is one that is a classic special education strategy. And any good teacher will tell you that you should use special education strategies with every child, as needed. The strategy is simply to take a complex task, break it down into small steps and give one step at a time.

An example of how I used this strategy was when I was teaching and I had my students write a report. I could have simply said, “Choose a topic in science and write a report about it.” I would have had 5% of my students do it well and the other 95% would have failed at the task. Instead I gave as a homework assignment to write down one question that science could answer for you. After the students completed that successfully, I told them to find three articles about the topic either on the Internet, in encyclopedia or in a newspaper or magazine. The next step was to summarize each article, write a first draft of a report, get a friend to proofread and write a final draft.

You should be employing this strategy with your kids whether they are 3 years old or 13 years old, obviously with different levels of sophistication. For a three year old cleaning up their room, you might say, “Pick up all the Lego pieces”. Then, “Pick up all the doll clothes.” For a thirteen year old it might be, “Empty all the clean dishes from the dishwasher and put them away.” Then, “take all the plates off the table, scrape them and rinse them.” Notice that these are two or three requests packaged together. Some thirteen year olds can handle that, others would have a harder time. So break it down!

The second strategy is to talk to your child about their goals and moving closer to their goals. I just read a great article (I wish I remember where!) that said anytime you are procrastinating, ask yourself a simple question. “Is this really what I want right now?” If you were really clear on your goals, you would be motivated to do what it takes to achieve those goals. If your child is not motivated, you should really be thinking about how to motivate him or her instead of forcing or bribing.

Let’s think forward a few years to when your child has a job. You know people who go to work and do what they have to do just to get a paycheck. You also know people who go to work and really enjoy what they do. They would almost be willing to do it for free. Which kind of employee do you want your child to grow up to be? They have to start learning now to be that way.

So you could motivate them with something external like a treat when they finish, or you can help them to build some internal motivation. Internal motivation for cleaning their room might be being able to find things. Internal motivation for finishing a school project might be the satisfaction of learning. Or the long-term goal of getting a degree.

So the way to stop procrastination is (1) to break the task into “bite-sized” pieces and (2) to be really motivated to do what you are doing. This is no small task, but most worthwhile tasks are not easy. Unless you are really motivated to do them!

Shaya Kass, PhD has a life mission of inspiring people to live in happiness and in gratitude. One of the ways this is accomplished is by helping parents be inspired and helping them to raise inspired kids. Get a very special report for free - The Secret to Having the Absolute Greatest Kids - at http://www.TrulyInspiredParent.com

Contributing Author for MyOutOfControlTeen.com


Single Parenting: How The Challenge Of Single Parenting Affects Your Decision To Divorce

By Karl Augustine Platinum Quality Author

Single parenting has seemingly become an acceptable norm which is unfortunate. According to the US Census Bureau, there were over 20 million single parents in the United States in the year 2000. That's a staggering statistic, certainly the worldwide number of people who are challenged with single parenting is exponentially higher.

When making a divorce decision and you have children, its natural to wonder about the challenges of single parenting and how it will affect your children. You may have seen other people struggle with single parenting or thought about the strain single parenting would seemingly put on you and your children.

Single Parenting Is Easier If You Know Yourself.

When deciding about getting a divorce and thinking about how single parenting figures in, make sure that you know yourself. Ask yourself if you're really ready to get divorced and if you can overcome the fear or challenge of single parenting. Don't be hasty with your decision, who knows? Maybe your marriage can be saved! Then again, maybe not.

Know yourself...know whether or not you're thinking of single parenting solely to take something away from your spouse...clearly a selfish and useless reason to be a single parent. Know whether or not you can adequately be a single parent based on your inner strength, work ethic, tendencies towards being overly busy, etc.

Single parenting is tough, what you may be able to take for granted as a married person will be gone if you're thinking of trying single parenting. Chances are if you're thinking of trying single parenting, you won't have much time at all for yourself...in essence, your 'self' will be all about your children. Know whether you're really ready for this...after all your children deserve the best care possible!

Single Parenting Is Easier If You Know Your Children.

Yes, you have to really know your children...you have to know how they'll respond to a plethora of changes if you're going to try single parenting. How will they respond to not seeing your spouse - Mom or Dad - as often? How will your children react to having to be dropped off at your ex-spouses house for visitation? How will the children feel about potentially not enjoying the same luxuries or attention that they may have had previously? Of course, there's more questions to ask to fit your particular situation...keep your children's best interest at heart.

You absolutely must know your children in order to be comfortable about trying single parenting. Granted, it won't be easy and there will be rocky points in the process, but if you know your children well enough single parenting can be productive assuming your marriage cannot be saved. In any event, your children most likely will have to sacrifice if you're going to try single parenting.

Single Parenting Will Be Easier If You Review Your Finances And Plan Accordingly.

Whether the concept is shallow or not is irrelevant. Finances (or lack thereof) figure in to your decision to venture into single parenting. Take a hard look at what your finances will allow for if you're thinking of becoming a single parent. You must not let emotion completely rule your decision to try single parenting. In order to do what's best for you and your children, you need to assess just how you'll make ends meet and how you'll provide for them...and yourself!

Be sensible and take a good amount of time to figure out how you'll live, where the money will come from, how your own freedoms will be compromised, and more importantly, how your children's freedoms will be affected!

If you have a well laid out plan with regards to finance before you start single parenting, you will be much better off.

Single parenting is hard and your children will be affected no matter how well off you are in your life with regards to finance and support mechanisms. But, unfortunately, single parenting can be a necessary thing to do in some instances. Just do right by your children and yourself and think about the future and how you can build your life correctly before you venture into single parenting.

Contributing Author for MyOutOfControlTeen.com


Is it normal for my child to have an imaginary friend?

By Ron Huxley

Does your child have an imaginary friend? Are you concerned that this may be unhealthy? Parents tend to worry a bit about their child when one day they come to us and talk about their "imaginary friend".

This is very common in all children and tends to happen between the ages of three and five. Unfortunately, many parents do not understand why their child is creating somebody imaginary and they end up feeling frustrated at their child.

As a loving parent you have taken a step in the right direction by reading this article. Why? Because you are going to feel good knowing that it is perfectly safe for your child to have created an imaginary friend, or perhaps more than one of these fake companions.

In fact, these imaginary friends are an important part of growing up. You may not remember having one yourself when you were a child, but I can almost guarantee that you did. Having imaginary friends is also a very creative function of a child.

You must understand that it is very hard for a youth to explain themselves or communicate well in words with adults. This "friend" then becomes almost like a gateway of communication between you and your child. It will help your young one deal with emotions and problems that he might otherwise not be able to handle.

A perfect example of this is when he is feeling lonely, bored, or in need of attention when you are not around. These emotions can make anyone feel very upset, especially a child under the age of five. So this imaginary friend might help him deal with a new school he has to transfer to, or adjust to a new home where there are not many friends, or perhaps if a new baby comes into the house and is getting all of the attention now.

Children have miraculous ways of dealing with life's issues and confusions, especially when they create this fake person that helps them get through it. Let's take fear for example. Children may create an imaginary animal, such as a dog, to help him overcome the fear of real dogs because he would like to have one himself.

Also, when children feel unaccepted or over-controlled by his parents, then he may invent an imaginary person who he pretends treats him as the way he wished Mommy and Daddy treated him. It sounds sad I know, but the minds of our kids are so young, so pure, and so fresh.

Children are not like us. They have not experienced all of these uneasy feelings in life and learned to deal with them. So from now on you should embrace this imaginary friend and find out more about him by asking questions. You just may learn a lot more about your child than you thought you could.

Get more power parenting tools and tips for raising your child at parentingtoolbox.com



By: Stanley Popovich

All most everybody worries about what will happen to a child when he or she runs away. The prospect of not knowing if something good or bad will happen can produce a lot of fear and anxiety. As a result, here is a list of techniques and suggestions on how to manage this fear of dealing with a child who has run away.

Remember is that no one can predict the future with one hundred percent certainty. Even if the thing that you feared does happen there are circumstances and factors that you can’t predict which can be used to your advantage. For instance, let’s say at your place of work that you miss the deadline for a project you have been working on for the last few months. Everything you feared is coming true. Suddenly, your boss comes to your office and tells you that the deadline is extended and that he forgot to tell you the day before. This unknown factor changes everything. Remember: we may be ninety-nine percent correct in predicting the future, but all it takes is for that one percent to make a world of difference.

This little fact can make a real difference because our worries tend to focus on worse case scenarios. By understanding that even the smallest of factors can affect a situation, this should give us hope that something positive will come out of these circumstances.

Challenge your negative thinking with positive statements and realistic thinking. When encountering thoughts that make your fearful or depressed, challenge those thoughts by asking yourself questions that will maintain objectivity and common sense. For example, you are afraid that if you do not get that job promotion then you will be stuck at your job forever. This depresses you, however your thinking in this situation is unrealistic. The fact of the matter is that there all are kinds of jobs available and just because you don’t get this job promotion doesn’t mean that you will never get one. In addition, people change jobs all the time, and you always have that option of going elsewhere if you are unhappy at your present location.

When your child runs away it is important to focus on the facts of the situation and not focus on our worries. Worry exaggerates the problem and doesn’t follow realistic thinking. Remember to get the facts of the situation. You get the facts by talking to the authorities who are familiar with these kinds of things. Once you focus on the facts the next step is to determine a solution to this situation based on those particular facts.

Learn to take it one day at a time. Instead of worrying about how you will get through the rest of the week, try to focus on today. Each day can provide us with different opportunities to learn new things and that includes learning how to deal with your problems. You never know when the answers you are looking for will come to your doorstep.

Worrying about what will happen next week is a waste of time. Things can change from day to day. You also learn new things and you gain experience. When a child runs away it is difficult to focus on the present but that is what you need to do.

Remember take a deep breath and try to find something to do to get your mind off of you anxieties and stresses. A person could take a walk, listen to some music, read the newspaper, watch TV, play on the computer or do an activity that will give them a fresh perspective on things. This will distract you from your current worries with your child.

A lot of times, our worrying can make the problem even worse. All the worrying in the world will not change anything. All you can do is to do your best each day, hope for the best, and when something does happen, take it in stride. If you still have trouble managing your anxiety of the future, then talking to a counselor or clergyman can be of great help.

Take advantage of the help that is available around you. If possible, talk to a professional who can help you manage your depression and anxieties. They will be able to provide you with additional advice and insights on how to deal with your current problem. By talking to a professional, a person will be helping themselves in the long run because they will become better able to deal with their problems in the future. Remember that it never hurts to ask for help.

Ask God For Help. Start talking and praying to God. Go to church or to a quiet place during the day to tell God that you are having this problem. In this particular case, you are dealing with the fear of the unknown regarding your child. Tell God how you feel and that you really could use his help and then say some prayers. After this, review the Bible and read some articles on trusting in God and then apply these concepts your given situation, which can be hard at times. Each and every day make it up a habit to talk to God and ask for his help.

Developing a faith to a higher power can be very effective in dealing with your fears. God is powerful and he has the ability to look over your child and keep him or her safe.

To help manage your negative thoughts, a person should visualize a red stop sign in their mind when they encounter a fear provoking thought. When the negative thought comes, a person should think of a red stop sign that serves as a reminder to stop focusing on that thought and to think of something else. A person can then try to think of something positive to replace the negative thought.

A technique that is very helpful is to have a small notebook of positive statements that makes you feel good. Whenever you come across an affirmation that makes you feel good, write it down in a small notebook that you can carry around with you in your pocket. Whenever you feel depressed or frustrated, open up your small notebook and read those statements. This will help to manage your negative thinking.

In every anxiety-related situation you experience, begin to learn what works, what doesn’t work, and what you need to improve on in managing your fears and anxieties. For instance, you have a lot of anxiety and you decide to take a walk to help you feel better. The next time you feel anxious you can remind yourself that you got through it the last time by taking a walk. This will give you the confidence to manage your anxiety the next time around.

Alcohol and substance abuse or any other addictions will not take away your problems and fears. Remember that alcohol and substance abuse or any other addictions will not take away your problems and fears. In the short run, they might make you feel better, but in the long run these addictions will only make things worse.

During these difficult times, it is important to stay open-minded and focus. Drinking or taking drugs will only make things worse. They are not the answer to your problems.

Be smart in how you deal with your fears and anxieties. Do not try to tackle everything all at once. When facing a current or upcoming task that overwhelms you with a lot of anxiety, break the task into a series of smaller steps. Completing these smaller tasks one at a time will make the stress more manageable and increases your chances of success.

For instance, let’s say that you get up in the morning and you are completely overrun by fear and worry over your child running away. When this happens, try to do one task at a time. Tell yourself that I am going to make breakfast even though I am sick with worry. Take your time. Once you make breakfast you can tell yourself that you were able to do a task even though you felt like you couldn’t do it. Then convince yourself to do another task like reading the newspaper. The goal is to not sit around and do nothing while your worry overwhelms you. Keep active in doing the small tasks. As you do more tasks you will be more productive and you will be able you to feel better in the long run.

There are other ways to deal with the fear of your child running away. Remember that things may seem hopeless, but they are not.
The main point of this article is that no matter how difficult it is to manage your fear, the answers are out there if you look hard enough. It might take some hard work and persistence, but it is possible to work through your fears and anxieties of your particular situation. In the end, it is all in the hands of God.


Stan Popovich is the author of "A Layman's Guide to Managing Fear Using Psychology, Christianity and Non Resistant Methods" - an easy to read book that presents a general overview of techniques that are effective in managing persistent fears and anxieties. For additional information go to: http://www.managingfear.com/


Your Parenting Style

By Allison Gilbert

Parenting is one area where my husband and I have had our major disagreements. I've learned over the years that I actually have something to teach him. But he has stuff to teach me too. It's a good thing that our children have two parents and not just one. We both have strengths that complement each other. It's the areas where we are weak that we run into difficulties with our parenting.

Parenting can be simplified by understanding that there are only two basic styles. One is "firm edge" and the other is "soft touch." It's useful to know which style comes naturally to you because it's the style where you're weak that you'll have the most trouble with your kids.

The Firm Edge Style

When you're strong in the firm edge style of parenting, you know how to set limits with your children. It's easy for you to develop consequences for bad behavior, teach responsibility and discipline. You like helping your children learn to reign in their messy, loud, "uncivilized" ways and teach them to be polite, moral and kind. This style helps children feel safe knowing there are rules they can count on. They know there is a parent who is solid and won't waver or be manipulated. Children can feel protected when they know what's expected of them and are aware of the boundaries keeping them safe.

The Soft Touch Style

The soft touch style of parenting tends to be strong in parents who are comfortable with feelings, messiness and flexible boundaries. If you're good at listening and creating a safe place for self-expression, then you're probably strong in soft touch. You may be the type of person who will easily follow your children's lead and allow for mistakes and creativity. You might also be someone who can go with the flow and not have to have your own agenda all the time. This style of parenting gives children lots of room and lets them know that whoever they are is lovable and acceptable. Children can feel comfortable in their own skin when they are given ample soft touch parenting.

Which Style Works Best?

Some parents have an ease with both styles of parenting. It helps to be able to use whatever style's necessary in the moment. If you find yourself favoring one style over the other though, you might run into difficulties. On the other hand, if you find that you can move from one style to the other as the situation warrants, your kids will benefit.

Sometimes one parent will be stronger in one style while the other parent will be more comfortable with the other style. This can work really well in a family where parents share responsibility, pick up where the other left off, and back each other up. Unfortunately in some families, parenting styles can be a source of friction and parents end up sabotaging each other's efforts at parenting. It can be especially difficult when parents aren't able to admit when their own style of parenting isn't working. As the old saying goes, "insanity is repeating the same mistakes over and over and expecting different results." It's a wonderful thing when one parent realizes he/she has hit a wall and asks for help from the other parent or an outside resource like a teacher or counselor.

Some children do better with one style of parenting over the other style. Other children do better when there is a blend of both styles. The most important thing about styles is to know when one is better suited to a particular situation than the other. Each style has its benefits and children will be served best when a parent can master the very style that's being called for. Different personalities, different stages of childhood and different situations will need to be handled by parents in very different ways.

Your Growing Edge in Parenting

Where are you strong in your parenting style? What are the difficulties that you run into with your kids? Do they know just how to push your buttons? Then look at your parenting style. If your kids are having a hard time interacting with you and vice versa, it could be that you need to flex your growing edge around parenting styles. Grow into the style that is least comfortable for you and maybe you'll see a difference in your relationship to your child.

Your Important Work

Parenting can be the toughest, most rewarding part of your job if you are the primary caretaker in the family. You have the opportunity to shape a life. How will you shape it? You also have the opportunity to grow from this work. Will you grow and change as a result? Will you become softer, more patient, more understanding, accepting and loving? Or maybe you will enhance your ability to set boundaries, limits and rules that serve you and protect others. Parenting is truly a time to learn as well as a time to teach. It can be the most rewarding part of this job or the most frustrating. How is it going for you today?

Allison Gilbert is a licensed psychotherapist in Santa Cruz, California. She has a website that offers counseling support for mothers, along with many free resources. You can sign up for a free tips weekly email or read the articles that she's written, request a free phone or email consultation, or connect with other mothers in her discussion forum. If you want extra support, she offers phone counseling as well as email advising, in addition to the personal counseling in her office.


Contributing Author for MyOutOfControlTeen.com


Parenting Tips That Build Character When Your Kids Are Driving You Crazy

Parenting Tips That Build Character When Your Kids Are Driving You Crazy
by: Jean Tracy, MSS

I remember counseling a second grade boy who was a ‘Sammy the Slacker.’ One day his teacher confided, “When I tell my class, ‘Children, please take out your readers,’ Sammy leans back in his chair, his arms hanging over its back, and calls out, ‘I can’t find my book!’ Sure enough, a little girl scrambles over, looks in his messy desk, and finds it for him.”

Sammy irritated his teacher, lost the respect of his classmates, and had no friends. These are not the results most parents want for their children. To help Sammy, I worked with his parents. I found out that his mother and grandmother believed it their duty to be servants to their families. They were to pick up after everyone, do all the housework, and smile too.

Sammy’s mom felt her smiles turn to anger. She understood that she was spoiling Sammy, making him weak, dependent, and distasteful to others. She decided to build character in Sammy by changing the beliefs she inherited from her mother.

3 Parenting Tips That Build Character:

==> Sammy’s mom wrote out age-appropriate chores for Sammy.

==> She created a chart to help build his character.

==> She worked with Sammy to choose a goal for his chart.

The goals Sammy’s mother offered were clear, simple, and positive. At the top of Sammy’s chart Sammy chose this goal:

“My goal is to do my own work and then help others.”

3 Parenting Tips That Motivate:

==> Sammy’s mom offered stickers for his chart.

==> She developed a fun activity list to share with him as a reward.

==> She gave Sammy the choice of which activity to share when he earned a certain number of stickers.

Once the chart was created, Sammy posted it on the refrigerator. Sammy’s mom knew she had to encourage his improvements.

3 Parenting Tips to Encourage Good Behavior:

==> Sammy’s mom rewarded him consistently.

==> She gave the stickers soon after he completed a task.

==> She scheduled his fun activity to do together soon after he earned enough stickers.

Because Sammy’s mom was positive and consistent in rewarding him, he went from being Sammy the Slacker to becoming Sammy the Helper. His teacher sent home reports of improvement and, slowly but surely, Sammy made friends.

Whether you have a Billy the Blamer, a Gretta the Greedy, or a child with some other problem behavior, consider using character building charts. You’ll be teaching your child responsibility, self-discipline, and teamwork. You’ll feel saner and happier. You’ll be building character too.

About The Author

Jean Tracy, MSS, “Granny Jean” publishes a FREE Parenting Newsletter at http://www.KidsDiscuss.com

Subscribe and receive 80 free fun activities to share with your kids.

Treat yourself to the Character Building Charts at http://KidsDiscuss.com too.

Contributing Author for www.MyOutOfControlTeen.com

Is MySpace a Good Space?

Is MySpace a Good Space?
by: Brad Franklin

There are more than 100 million people who are members of MySpace. This number continues to grow and the majority of people who have memberships at MySpace are young people.

Teens and young adults post all kinds of information on MySpace. Most of this information is very personal and can be dangerous. Young members of MySpace often do not realize that there are people using MySpace who are not honest about their intentions. There are predators who lure teens and young adults into relationships that are extremely risky and unsafe.

Many young people love being part of MySpace. They feel it is the perfect place to post their photos, profiles and blogs. The younger members of MySpace think it is safe and don’t think anything bad will happen to them.

If you are a parent who has a child who uses the Internet there are some things you can do to keep you kids safer. Even if you don’t know much about the Internet you can still lower the risks for your kids when they are using online services.

Your son or daughter will have online aliases. Find out what these are. Do not be afraid to restrict online use to the times when a parent is home. It is also a good idea to have the computer located in a place where it can be monitored. If the computer is in a higher traffic area you can pop in often and see what’s going on.

Talk to your kids about your concerns and come up with some family rules. Discuss the instances where predators have used the Internet to abduct and assault kids.

MySpace may be a good space if kids know the dangers and have parents who know what to look for.

About The Author

Brad Franklin
http://www.websafekid.com is designed to help parents, kids and teens with internet safety, and learn how to protect their privacy and security online and to teach responsible internet us

Contributing Author for www.MyOutOfControlTeen.com

Oppositional Defiant Disorder Treatment

Oppositional Defiant Disorder Treatment

by: Anthony Kane, MD

About a year ago I wrote an article on Oppositional Defiant Disorder discussing the condition, symptoms and treatment options. This article is an update describing what is new.


Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) is a psychiatric behavior disorder that is characterized by aggressiveness and a tendency to purposefully bother and irritate others. These behaviors cause significant difficulties with family and friends and at school or work.


Oppositional defiant children show a consistent pattern of refusing to follow commands or requests by adults. These children repeatedly lose their temper, argue with adults, and refuse to comply with rules and directions. They are easily annoyed and blame others for their mistakes. Children with ODD show a pattern of stubbornness and frequently test limits, even in early childhood.

These children can be manipulative and often induce discord in those around them. Commonly they turn attention away from themselves by inciting parents and other family members to fight with one and other.

-Behavioral Symptoms

Normal children occasionally have episodes of defiant behavior, particularly during ages of transition such as 2 to 3 or the teenage years where the child uses defiance in an attempt to assert himself. Children who are tired, hungry, or upset may be defiant. Oppositional defiant behavior is a matter of degree and frequency. Children with Oppositional Defiant Disorder display difficult behavior to the extent that it can interfere with learning, school adjustment, and, sometimes, with the child’s social relationships.

Common behaviors seen in Oppositional Defiant Disorder include:

· Losing one’s temper

· Arguing with adults

· Actively defying requests

· Refusing to follow rules

· Deliberately annoying other people

· Blaming others for one’s own mistakes or misbehavior

· Being touchy, easily annoyed

· Being easily angered, resentful, spiteful, or vindictive

· Speaking harshly, or unkind when upset

· Seeking revenge

· Having frequent temper tantrums

Many parents report that their ODD children were rigid and demanding from an early age.


The diagnosis of ODD is not always straight forward and needs to be made by a psychiatrist or some other qualified mental health professional after a comprehensive evaluation.

If you feel your child may have ODD, there is a quick ODD Screening Test at http://addadhdadvances.com/ODDtest.html


It is not clear what causes Oppositional Defiant Disorder. There are currently two theories.

The developmental theory suggests that ODD is really a result of incomplete development. For some reason, ODD children never complete the developmental tasks that normal children master during the toddler years. They get stuck in the 2-3 year old defiant stage and never really grow out of it.

The learning theory suggests that Oppositional Defiant Disorder comes as a response to negative interactions. The techniques used by parents and authority figures on these children bring about the oppositional defiant behavior.


Oppositional Defiant Disorder usually does not occur alone. 50-65% of ODD children also have ADD ADHD; 35% of these children develop some form of affective disorder; 20% have some form of mood disorder, such as Bipolar Disorder or anxiety; 15% develop some form of personality disorder. Many of these children have learning disorders also.

Any child with Oppositional Defiant Disorder must be evaluated for other disorders as well. If your child has ODD it is imperative to find out what are the co-existing problems. This is the key to treating the condition, as we shall soon discuss.


So what happens to these children? There are four possible paths.

Some will grow out of it. Half of the preschoolers that are labeled ODD are normal by the age of 8. However, in older ODD children, 75% will still fulfill the diagnostic criteria later in life.

The ODD may turn into something else. 5-10% of preschoolers with ODD have their diagnosis changed from ODD to ADHD. In some children, the defiant behavior gets worse and these children eventually are diagnosed with Conduct Disorder at http://addadhdadvances.com/CDtest.html. This progression usually happens fairly early. If a child has ODD for 3-4 years and he hasn’t developed Conduct Disorder, then he won’t ever develop it.

The child may continue to have ODD without any thing else. This is unusual. By the time preschoolers with ODD are 8 years old, only 5% have ODD and nothing else. The child develops other disorders in addition to ODD. This is very common.

-Treatment: Medical Intervention

There have been some recent studies that have examined the effects of certain medications on Oppositional Defiant Disorder. All the research is preliminary and just suggests that certain treatments may help.

One study examined the use of Ritalin to treat children with both ADHD and ODD. This study found that 90% of the children treated with Ritalin no longer had the ODD by the end of the study. The researchers skewed the results a bit because a number of children were dropped from the study because they wouldn’t comply with the treatment regimen. Still if these children are included as treatment failures the study still showed a 75% success rate.

There have been two studies examining the effect of Strattera on children with both ADHD and ODD. One study showed that Strattera helped with ODD, one study showed it did not help.

There was a large Canadian study that showed that Risperdal helped with aggressive behavior in children with below normal intelligence. It did not matter if the child had ADHD or not.

There was study showing that 80% of children with explosive behavior improved when given the mood stabilizer, divalproex.

There was another pilot study examining the use of Omega-3 oils and vitamin E in ODD children. Both helped the ODD behavior to some degree.

-Treatment: Psychological Intervention

Parent management training is still viewed as the main treatment for Oppositional Defiant Disorder. Our program, How to Improve Your Child’s Behavior, located at http://addadhdadvances.com/betterbehavior.html which is available online, or some other parent training program is still considered essential if you want to help your child. Also, the younger your child is when you enroll in such a program, the better the results.

-Conclusion: Advice to Parents

Currently, there is still far too little research on this very common disorder.

Medically, the most important consideration is to treat other disorders that come along with ODD. Considering that Ritalin may help alleviate the problem in 75-90% of ODD children who have ADHD, and considering that most children with ODD also have some degree of ADHD, I feel that it is very worth your while to try your ODD child on Ritalin unless you know for sure that he does not have ADHD. The other treatments may also be worth a try depending upon the nature of your child.

I feel that using Omega-3 supplements and a vitamin E supplement should be tried in all children. This is because most children are deficient in these nutrients. Even if it does not help with the ODD, it should make your child healthier.

Parent training is still the most effective means of dealing with Oppositional Defiant Disorder. The two main drawbacks of most of these programs are the expense and the availability.

Some practitioners charge $100 or more per visit and considering the program will take several months costs add up. Insurance usually will not pay for such programs. Many parents complain to me that they cannot afford the program that their child so desperately needs.

In addition, these programs are not available everywhere. Over the years, numerous parents have told me that where they live there are no programs for Oppositional Defiant Children.

I created How to Improve Your Child’s Behavior to address these two problems. It allows parents to help their children regardless of where they live and at a cost that is less than one office visit. Even though it was an experiment to try to administer such a program online and to date no one else is doing this, over the past two years How to Improve Your Child’s Behavior has proven time and again to help parents gain control of their defiant children.

Get more information on Oppositional Defiant Disorder- ODD Help at http://addadhdadvances.com/betterbehavior.html

It is tough to live with children who have ODD. However, if you make sure that your child has his other problems addressed and you improve your parenting skills by enrolling in a parent training program, you can do a great deal to improve your child’s condition and his future.

About The Author– Anthony Kane, MD is a physician and international lecturer. Get help for your ADD/ADHD child, including child behavior advice, information on the latest ADHD treatment, and help with Oppositional Defiant Disorder at http://addadhdadvances.com.

Contributing Author for www.MyOutOfControlTeen.com

What is ADHD and How do You Manage it?

What is ADHD and How do You Manage it? By: Dr. Noel Swanson

Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) show the following symptoms:

1) Poor concentration and attention span

2) Poor memory

3) Impulsiveness - the trait of doing things without thinking first

4) Easily frustrated - because of poor concentration and memory when they cannot remember things, they get frustrated. This causes behavioral patterns like temper tantrums and outbursts

The above traits are even shown by people who are not suffering from ADHD. Because of ADHD children suffer in various fields and activities in and out of school. They have to face defeat and failure in various areas like:

a) Participating in activities at school such as getting work done, paying attention, maintaining focus, being attentive in class etc.

b) Participating in healthy activities at home such as getting chores finished, maintaining cordial relations with siblings, maintaining a modicum of efficiency and getting things done on time.

c) socially (unable to take turns or wait in line, bossy and overbearing, easily frustrated leading to temper outbursts and aggression, impulsive, so often in trouble for doing antisocial actions e.g. unwise \”practical jokes\”).

ADHD is not a disease or illness in the sense that it is caused by germs, by injury, or by a clearly defined physical malfunction (such as asthma or diabetes). It is simply the result of parts of the brain not working at full efficiency.

Studies have proved that ADHD is partially genetic, gets transferred from parents to children and in a way runs in the family. What has also been established that the symptoms and the problems associated with ADHD are almost life long. They cannot be cured over night are with you for a long time. In most cases, these symptoms and problems continue well into the teens and often into adulthood too.

How do you manage ADHD?

The big concern for children with ADHD is the danger of developing long term complications. For example:

a) Their fear of failure at school owing to poor concentration, leading to school drop out

b) they may be constantly in trouble because of their impulsivity and so be excluded from school and end up with the police,

c) they may be so discouraged by their failures that they turn to drink, drugs, crime, or become depressed and anxious.

All of these, in turn, can lead to long term complications that affect functioning in adulthood.

Effective management of ADHD starts at home. Parents have to be very patient and give their best to their child. The treatment of ADHD is very long, but it has to be given to the child so that he is a better adjusted adult. The goal is to prevent those long term compliations. Since you as the parent know your child the best, it is you who will have to take an active part in the management of his ADHD. An effective ADHD management program should include the following components:

COMMITTED PARENTS who will work for the best for their child. There is much information, including books and videos, on ADHD and how to help your child - borrow them, buy them, read them, and become informed. But remember there is also much mis-information (especially on the internet and in newspapers and magazines), so discuss what you read with your local support group and professionals. Be especially suspicious of groups who claim to have the \”magic cure\” for your child.

GOOD COMMUNICATION. Communication between the school and the home is very important for effective management. This enables you to discuss solutions and implement them for an effective output.

ADJUSTMENTS IN THE ENVIRONMENT. Children with ADHD do best in a quiet, calm, structured, low-stimulation environment (e.g. one to one) and poorly in chaotic situations (e.g. busy classrooms, noisy, busy homes). As a family you may want to find ways to reorganise life so that it is less stressful for all of you. At school the teachers will be doing the same, and it is best if the two can be co-ordinated.

CLEAR STRATEGY FOR BEHAVIORAL MANAGEMENT. Children afflicted with ADHD are great responders to award and punishment scenarios. They come out best when they are informed of the awards they shall receive when they behave in a particular manner. Obviously, the awards have to be far more frequent than the punishment. Are not clear on what is involved need to consult a professional.

SUPPORT FOR THE PARENTS. Looking after children with ADHD can be very stressful for the parents. Bringing up these children can be very taxing. At times it may lead to depression and marital breakdown in parents. To help the parents to cope with the stress of bringing up a ADHD child, the parents should also consult the parent support groups and parents training groups, marital counseling, and family therapy etc.

MEDICATION for ADHD should be such that reduces the symptoms and lets the child the opportunity to learn academic, social, and other life skills. The aim here should be to get the correct medicine in the right dosage. child the opportunity to learn academic, social, and other life skills.

Most common type of medicines used for children with ADHD are the stimulants. One medicine that is available in the market to reduce the symptoms of ADHD is atomoxetine. This medicine has very less side effects.

Health professional can only help the parents solve particular problems of your child, but they can not bring up your child for you. They will also help you clear your doubts on how to handle certain situations.

The person who has to cope with this is you and your family. Therefore, this is best addressed by you and the first step towards this is to learn as much as you can. Learning all you can results in better management and better results.

Information about the Author: For more articles about child behavior and for his excellent book, why not visit Dr. Noel Swanson’s website www.good-child-guide.com ? He also does a free newsletter which is well worth reading.

Contributing Author for www.MyOutOfControlTeen.com

Girls and Women with ADHD: The Silent and Ignored Disorder in Females

By: Delmarie Alvarez

Traditionally, when we learn or speak of research on ADD ADHD it is mostly focused on males. Males were believed to make up 80% of all individuals with ADD ADHD and according to the DSM IV, the ratio of boys with ADHD to girls was 4:1. Information and understanding of ADD ADHD in girls and women is very recent and as a result, girls and woman with ADHD are often overlooked and do not get diagnosed as readily as males. So why are females overlooked? To begin with, females with ADD ADHD exhibit a variety of issues that are different from those in males with ADD ADHD, and girls deal with very different challenges as well. Boys with ADD ADHD will tend to participate in more disruptive behaviors at school and home.

They are more defiant and aggressive. Girls, though they can be physically hyperactive, will engage in a quieter act of disorganization and inattention and are often timid and compliant. Because of the absence of disruptive behavior, the girl calls little attention to herself or her issues leading to a late, if at all, diagnosis. Research shows girls do not get diagnosed until they are women in their mid 30’s. This is due to the fact that they did not know there was a name to their inattention and often chaotic life until their own children were found to exhibit the same characteristics and were eventually diagnosed.

A study published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 38, 966-975, shows girls with ADHD were 16 times more likely to have repeated a grade in school, and almost ten times more likely to have been placed in special education than those in the non-ADHD group. They also found girls were less likely to be diagnosed with a co-morbid disorder, such as conduct disorder or oppositional defiant disorder, than boys.

Other research shows girls and woman with ADHD (more so if undiagnosed) are more likely to suffer from depression, anxiety, drug and alcohol abuse, sexual promiscuity, and unplanned pregnancies. The above results stress the importance of treating ADD ADHD in females as successfully and comprehensively as it is treated in males.

ADD ADHD in females can manifest as a timid, introverted, withdrawn, daydreamer who was often disorganized, confused and overwhelmed. It can also come across as a hyperactive and overly talkative individual that is overly social, moody and impulsive. Whatever the symptoms, ADD ADHD is affected even greater when mixed with the hormonal rollercoaster of a young woman or adult with premenstrual syndrome. Emotional instability, irritability and mood swings are some of the challenges these girls and women will also have to endure.

The difficult societal issues most females have to deal with on a daily basis also become harder to comprehend and manage. For example, a married woman who is expected to be the caretaker and nurturer of her home may feel inadequate in fulfilling her role. She may not have a support network or someone she could talk to and has continued being the supporter of everyone else. Handling a full time job and the full time responsibilities at home add more pressure and stress to an already overwhelmed individual. The above issues exacerbate the problems ADD ADHD may already bring to their lives, impacting their self esteem and causing depression and anxiety.

The positive news is more attention and research has been given to girls and woman and ADD ADHD. The goal is to promote more awareness and implement effective treatment strategies before the young girl becomes a woman so that she will not have to overcome the hardships and struggles that could have been avoided if diagnosed early.

About The Author:

Delmarie Alvarez is a seasoned evaluator for some of the most respected evaluation centers in the New York area. She is the author of Passage to Freedom: The Key To Unlocking The Gifts Behind ADD/ADHD, and publishes a free bi-weekly eTips newsletter to help individuals with ADD ADHD take the first step toward achieving success in their life or that of a loved one with out the need for mind-altering medications. To subscribe to this free bi-weekly eTips newsletter or find out more about the Passage to Freedom eBook go to http://www.hope-for-adhd.com/

Contributing Author for www.MyOutOfControlTeen.com