Many parents of children with ADHD find it hard to put their offspring to sleep at the end of the day. Is there anything you can do to make the evenings easier for yourself and for your child?
Sensory integration problems and tantrums
At the end of the day, most parents and children are already tired and wishing for some peace and quiet. Why is it then, that this is often the tensest time of the day for everyone? Why do you find yourself shouting at your child in the evenings, and your child is running around like crazy as if he has just gotten out of bed full of energy?
One reason is that exhaustion depletes our self-control and makes us cranky. That is way your temper may be much shorter in the evenings. But for your child, it may be even harder: children with ADHD often suffer from sensory integration issues, which means they experience much more stress in normal everyday situations than other children. So, on top of the exhaustion, they are also very stressed and tense. It’s difficult to relax or remain calm in these conditions.
How to help your child calm down in the evening?
First, look into your child’s sensory processing issues. Find out, what causes him/her the worst stress and try to minimize its effects. Also, sign your child up for physiotherapy. It will help her cope better with stressful situations and develop her sensory processing ability.
Another thing is to try to do something which your child finds relaxing. Don’t turn the evenings into a tense time, by rushing to clean up, do laundry, finish the dishes, or shouting about toys on the floor. Sometimes it is worth it to leave a little mess behind if this means a calmer evening and better sleep for all of you.