Low self-esteem and confidence is not uncommon among teens with attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD.) According to research, there is a direct relationship between self-esteem and ADHD.
From their interactions with others to their performance in school, kids with ADHD face some challenges that can take a toll on their self-confidence. As a parent, you no doubt, want your teenager to enjoy life and grow into a well-balanced adult, which is why you must do your best to boost your teen’s self-esteem.
Before You Get Started
First things first; is it really ADHD? You can start by having your teen take an ADHD online test as a preliminary assessment. The test is quite streamlined and will take your teenager no more than a few minutes to complete. Following up with a physician will give you a more accurate diagnosis.
The next thing that you want to do is to know the specifics of how your teenager’s ADHD may be affecting their self-confidence. Keep in mind that everyone’s experience is unique, and while your teen may feel out of place because of their hyperactivity, another one may not feel so good about themselves because of their inattention.
How to Help Your ADHD Kids to Improve Self Confidence
Alongside the ADHD online test, you may also want to search online for ways to boost your teenager’s self-confidence. Apart from these online resources, you can also get some insights from a physician. Some of the best tips that have proven effective in building and boosting self-esteem and confidence among teens with ADHD include the following:
- Identify and Play to Strengths
Your teen may not be the most academically-gifted, but they may be so good at other things such as art and sports. Identify these areas of strength and play to them. It is said that kids with ADHD can be quite creative, so look into that. When you find these strengths, leverage them, and engage in these activities regularly so your teen has a sense of accomplishment and pride.
- Spend Quality Time Together
It may seem like all your teen wants to do is stay locked up in their room left to their phone or computer, but that shouldn’t stop you from trying to spend time together. Any positive interactions that you have with your child, for however short a time, will help to build their confidence. Join in on that video or whatever other activity your teen enjoys, or try something new and different.
- Practice Social Skills
Role-playing different social scenarios will allow your teen to practice and improve their social skills. From the ADHD online test, your own observation as a parent, and your child’s input, identify areas that your teenager struggles with and play out possible social scenarios where specific social skills may be tested.
Play out different responses, helping your teen identify which ones are more appropriate for that scenario. Being able to behave and respond appropriately in different scenarios will give your teen the confidence to freely interact with others in different settings.
- Positive Feedback: Praise and Rewards
Recognize your teen’s successes and wins, however small they may seem. Did you get through a whole evening of hosting without any incidents around your teen not respecting boundaries? That is definitely something to be proud of, and you should let your child know as much. Praise both effort and results, and don’t forget to let your teen know that they can do so much better with positive affirmations and reaffirmations.
While some people may not agree with this technique, you may find it quite beneficial to reward good behavior. It isn’t so much about bribing your teen into good behavior, but by rewarding it, you will boost their self-confidence in the present, and encourage them to do better even in the future.
- Give Assurance that You Will Always Be a Constant
Teenage years are hard enough. Throw in the challenges that come with having ADHD and your teen may be in for quite the ride.
Some days will be good, others, great. Other days will not be so good, and others may be downright brutal. All these changes can affect your child’s self-confidence. The assurance that you will always be there for them, regardless of the circumstances, will help to ground your teen. Take every opportunity available to let your child know that you will always be in their corner, on both the best and worst days and every other day in between the two.
A boost in self-esteem and confidence will only benefit your teenager with ADHD, which should spill over to their various interactions with others. As a parent, you can do much, as highlighted, to improve your teen’s self-confidence. Start with an ADHD online test and if diagnosed with ADHD, do what you can to build your child’s self-esteem.