Practically every week I hear an array of concerns regarding distractibility and inattentiveness.
There’s always the question of, “Does my child have ADHD/ADD.” In the discussion with parents a lot of territory is covered and I do my best to broaden the narrative and review other factors that may be contributing to why a child is not consistently paying attention.
Here are some factors to consider before presuming your child has a neurological disorder:
- Perhaps the work is too hard. If it is, it will lead to inattention
- Perhaps the child is playing video games far too late in the evening and not getting enough sleep. Maybe the child is addicted to video games leaving little in the tank for sustained mental effort, something that I am seeing much more.
- Maybe there’s been a lot of tension and fighting in the family that is unsettling to the child, which will lead to distractibility.
- Perhaps the teacher is not motivating. Not to blame the teacher, but a boring teacher can certainly produce a lot of off-task behavior.
- Perhaps the child has “W.B.D.” (i.e., “Worksheet Burnout Disorder.”) and is being flooded by too many worksheets (or its on-line equivalent), leaving the child feeling disconnected and unmotivated.
- Perhaps the child has significant reading problems, making it difficult to pay attention and comprehend. This is an extremely important consideration.
- Perhaps there is a lot of distraction in the environment (whether it be the classroom or at home) and the atmosphere does not lend itself to paying attention.
- Maybe the child is struggling with anxiety and the excessive worrying looks like inattention.
- Perhaps the child is feeling like she may have social issues as she goes on TikTok and Instagram and sees her friends does not feel included, leaving a sense of her upset and distractibility.
- Maybe the child has been made fun of or ridiculed, but no one really knows of it other than the child.
Oh, yeah. I almost forgot.
Maybe the child has ADD/ADHD.
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