LIVING WITH ADHD
Check out the tips below to
help manage ADHD at all ages:
Tips for kids
- There are many books written for and about children with ADHD. Visit your library
or bookstore to browse their selection. Or ask your doctor for their recommendations.
- There are also many websites that you can turn to for information and advice. Ask a parent or caregiver to help you find accurate, reliable sources.
Develop a routine
- Develop a routine – and stick with it. This can help set and manage other people’s
expectations as well as your own, and even help you remember to take your medicine.
- Talk to your parents, teachers, and doctor about what routines you find helpful at home
Gain helpful skills
- Get someone to teach you strategies for staying organized, dealing with intense
emotions, and remembering to do important tasks.
- Talk openly and honestly to your parents, your doctor, teachers, friends.
- Discuss your feelings and talk about difficulties you may be having at home, at school,
or with friends.
- The more others know about you, the better equipped they will be to help you.
Tips for parents of children with ADHD
- Promote safety and structure in the home.
- Use visual reminders to create structure and promote family communication.
- Monitor homework output and use a clock timer to divide tasks into “bite-sized chunks”.
- Offer support and feedback.
- Build your child’s confidence by discovering and reinforcing those things that they
enjoy and/or do well.
- Use daily positive report cards to encourage positive habit development.
Tips for adolescents
- Visit websites for information, tips, tools, and resources on ADHD.
- Learn about, and take advantage of, any accommodations that you can access at school.
- Let your parents and teachers know what types of things you find helpful when dealing with your ADHD.
- Advocate for your needs in the school system, and ask your school to put the
appropriate accommodations in place to assist you – and others like you – with your
- Talk to your parents, teachers, and any other adults about your feelings and concerns
about your ADHD.
- If you have felt pressure to experiment with drugs, talk to someone you trust. This could
be a good friend, your parent, a teacher or older sibling.
- If you’re struggling with low self-esteem, don’t do it alone. Turn to those that you feel
comfortable sharing your feelings with – it’s possible they are feeling the same way and
can lend a supportive ear.
Tips for adults
- Read, watch and listen to reliable sources of information about ADHD.
- Websites put out by the Canadian government, hospitals, and non-profit
organizations are credible sources.
Take advantage of technology
- Use programmable watches, electronic organizers, and smart phones to help stay
organized and to set up useful reminders.
- Use assistive and organizational technologies, such as writing and communication
software to help manage written tasks.
- Look online for support groups in your area.
Tips to help manage your ADHD
Tips to help manage ADHD throughout your day:
- Take your medication exactly as your
healthcare professional tells you, for as
long as they tell you to.
- Stay physically active and eat well.
Regular exercise and eating a well-balanced diet can help regulate mood.
- Adopt healthy sleep habits. Being well rested helps with mood and ability to focus. Start a healthy sleep habit today by putting away your phone (or other electronic devices) at least an hour before bed.
- Keep learning. Our knowledge of ADHD, treatment, and management strategies continues to evolve. Don’t stop learning about ADHD – or learning more about yourself.
- Call yourself stupid or lazy. You’ve got this.
You’re just doing it differently, and at your own pace.
- Give up. Some days will be easy, other days will be a struggle, but don’t give up. Celebrate your progress every step of the way
- Take on every task that comes your way.
If you have difficulty completing jobs and staying organized, it’s important to say “no” more often so that you don’t take on more than you can manage.
- Change who you are. ADHD is something that can be managed, but you don’t have to change who you are to manage it.