Monday, June 4, 2012

How can you Help your Child with ADHD to Decrease his Excessive Verbiage?

Children with ADHD have all of their thoughts spinning around in their minds. They just cannot wait to say what is in their thoughts. Seemingly, they must say those thoughts immediately, which they express as excessive talking and continuous verbiage.

What can a parent do to help their child with ADHD to decrease the amount of verbiage that they are expressing?  This social skill is one that requires children with ADHD to learn how to self-regulate their verbiage.

The first thing that must be done is for the child to realize both the amount and the speed of his verbiage. In consideration of the fact that children with ADHD are not typically characterized by self-awareness, this is the pivotal part of helping him to diminish his excessive talking.

A feasible way to help the child to become aware of how much and how fast he is speaking is to have someone videotape him speaking to you. I would video three or four segments at various parts of the day, so that he can see that he speaks in this way on numerous occasions throughout the day.  Nowadays, videotaping is an easy task, because every Smartphone has a video component.

It is imperative however, that the child does NOT think that he is weird and/or that he does NOT think that is doing something really terrible. Children with ADHD arguably have low self-esteem and you certainly do not want to make him feel worse about himself.

Watch the video with your child and ask him general questions about his interactions with you in the video. If he does not see how he is speaking, then very carefully, ask some more direct, specific questions, as I have written below.

Ask your child the following questions about his behavior in the video:

v How close is he standing to you? Is he standing too close to you?

v Is he waiting for you to answer his questions, or does he just keep talking?

v Does his talking escalate into more and more and faster and faster talking, without him waiting for answers?

v How are you reacting to his excessive talking?

v Are you trying to stand further away from him as he speaks?

v Are you trying to answer his questions but unable to answer them because of his excessive talking?

v Do you appear frustrated as he is speaking to you, because it is very difficult for you to answer him because he does not stop talking?

v Does he appear frustrated that you are unable to answer his questions?

Observe his reactions as to how he is talking in the videos, so that you can gauge your next step in terms of teaching him how to self-regulate his excessive talking.

Let me know how your child reacts to his excessive talking on the videos, so that I can describe some interventions that you can try.