Executive Functioning and Coordination

For some kids, going to school is a miniature version of going to a club. You have your bouncers (from principals to teacher’s aids) and you have your bar tenders (cafeteria staff). The entire day, in between learning, they catch up with their friends, hang out at recess, etc. For others, going to school is jail. Not the fancy ones with the gym and cable TV. I mean the ones that feel like those four walls are iron bars. The teachers and higher ups are wardens, and going to the yard means some sort of certain humiliation. There will always be someone that seems to be more popular than they are, and then there will be the ones that “OWN THIS JOINT!”. It’s a hard truth to hear, but with all of the anti-bullying campaigns around, there is no escaping this harsh reality. For those who feel trapped, for any reason, NeuroFit in Glen Rock, NJ has created two programs to meet the needs of these kids.

adhd-flyer

Executive Functioning/Social Skills

Children who display issues or symptoms related to ADHD, Aspergers, impulse control or social skills often have trouble staying focused on tasks they don’t find interesting, don’t know how to filter their thoughts before speaking, or have difficulty making friends or keeping the ones they have. The Conquer Program, created by a licensed clinical social worker, has been formulated to help children focus, make friends, learn how to deal with rejection and much more.  Children will also have an opportunity to burn off energy and apply social skills learned with the LCSW by spending time in the VOLT FITNESS Circuit. Their time in the circuit is spent playing with therapeutic interactive games and interactive video games, overseen by a physical therapist. If you would like to learn more about the program, or even enroll your child or teen, call us at 201-857-4768 or visit our page at http://www.voltfitnessusa.com/adhd-program.html.

COORDINATION PROGRAM

Coordination

Take a moment to think back to the first time you peddled your bicycle without help. There was excitement, a sense of adventure and even accomplishment. It was a red letter day, V for Victory! Whether you got it on the first try, or even the 85th try, you were able to get those feet pumping and put those wheels into motion. However, there are children who, no matter how hard they try, often give up feeling like they will never learn how. Their parents have tried everything from tricycles to training wheels and they’re out of ideas. Thats where the NeuroFit Coordination program comes in. Our physical therapist has formulated an ongoing program that will help kids make an improvement on their coordination, balance, and more. Most importantly kids will learn how to build confidence with each success they have. If your child needs a little help with their running techniques, hand eye coordination, throwing and catching or even just to do better in gym class, call us at 201-857-4768 or take a look at our page at http://www.voltfitnessusa.com/coordination-program.html.

Both programs have been designed to help kids and teens navigate the choppy waters that they face in school, gym or on the field The programs are covered by participating health benefit plans and are held at VOLT FITNESS in Glen Rock, near the Ridgewood Border.

Get Fit. Make Friends. Have Fun!

– Jay

VOLT FITNESS
201-857-3800
566 S Broad Street
Glen Rock, NJ 07452
www.voltfitnessusa.com

Going Back To School! Homework & ADHD

Child doing homework

School is back in session! September is upon us, kids are going back to school. Time to wake the kiddies up bright and early, gather up those fancy school supplies, prepare a healthy wholesome breakfast, and off to school they go! It’s all about getting back into a routine.

Speaking of routine, the beginning of each school year can be difficult for some children. Here are some helpful tips to making this easier not only for your child, but for you, as a parent as well.

  • Meet your child’s teacher. Communication is key. Find out what to expect for the rest of the school year, be informed when a project is due, etc. This will show the teacher that you have interest and care about how your child does in school.
  • Set up a “Homework Time”. Some children work best right after school, as they call this “still in school mode”. Other’s need a break after school and there is nothing wrong with that. If your child is involved in sports and each day is different, have a calendar with a schedule setting up times when homework should start and be completed by.
  • Say your child has a big project due, set up breaks in between work. Children with symptoms of ADHD tend to lack concentration. So the point is to not make them feel overwhelmed. A 5 minute break every 20-30 minutes is recommended.
  • Set rules! Having the TV on during homework is a big NO. Sometimes you have to be the strict parent and set ground rules by making it clear that video games/watching his or her favorite TV show will not happen until homework is completed!
  • Have a study spot where your child feels comfortable and at ease to complete assignments. It is actually said that having light music playing in the background is helpful.

And most importantly, always praise your child for his/her good work! In the end, whether it’s children, teenagers or adults, we all want to do well in school. Reward your child with his or her favorite treat after an A+ project! This will remind your child that good work pays off.

If you live in Bergen County, NJ and have a child or teen struggling with symptoms related to ADHD, Asperger’s, impulse control, and social skills, then check out the Conquer Program. Created by NeuroFit, this executive functioning and social skills program has been designed by an LCSW to help children learn strategies to deal with every day real life situations. This program, covered by participating health benefit plans, is taking enrollment now and will begin this month. For more information go to our site at http://www.voltfitnessusa.com/adhd-program.html or give us a call at 201-857-4768.

Have a fun, healthy, and A+ school year!!!

-Ingrid

Get Fit. Make Friends. Have Fun!
VOLT FITNESS
566 Broad Street
Glen Rock, NJ 07452
201-857-3800
http://www.voltfitnessusa.com

Back to School with ADHD

School boy standing in hall at school

I used to love going back to school. The first day was always my favorite day (of course my second favorite was the last day). Going shopping for the first day was so much fun; picking up new binders, getting those 3 packs of 1000 sheet lined paper, new pencils and pens… the list goes on and on. Couldn’t wait to go and show off my new backpack, find out who was in my class(es), etc. etc. For many children, the first day of school was not and is not met with as much enthusiasm. Below, we have a few tips for parents of children with ADHD and Asperger’s to use when going back to school this fall.

A+ Great Work

Tips for Going Back to School with ADHD and Asperger’s

Set Goals and Rewards

Making goals for children with ADHD or Asperger’s helps set the tone and gives them clear expectations for the school year ahead; both at home and in class. This helps keep children focused on their daily tasks. Set goals such as handing in assignments on time, getting to bed and getting ready for school on time; even use good behavior, such as not getting into fights. Remember to include your child in this process, and even make it something the whole family can be involved with. Map out what goals you all feel are not only important but attainable. Rewards for these goals could be special family activities and outings or special time with their friends.

Stick to a Schedule

Creating a schedule helps children maintain their focus. By letting them know what is coming up ahead, you can avoid impulsive behavior. A daily schedule should include meal times, and homework times. Be sure to add free time, exercise, and bedtime, Don’t forget to include allotted time for prep and time to wind down. When doing a schedule, keep in mind to include time for those reward activities. As before, make sure to include your child in the schedule process. This way, they can feel a sense of ownership. Make sure to keep the schedule in a highly visible area so your child can be reminded of what is expected of them for that day. Don’t forget, when they know what is ahead, you can cut down on impulsive behavior.

Communicate with Your Child’s School

The best person to speak on your child’s behalf, is you. Make sure you meet with your child’s teacher and the school administration, study teams, guidance counselor. Let them know about your child’s strengths and weaknesses and be completely honest. Work with them by sharing your practices at home and ask for suggestions. If possible, go over your child’s IEP/504 or set up a separate meeting.

So remember, when creating your goals, rewards and schedule, include your child and the rest of the family. Be open and honest with their school to help with the transition from summer vacation to school year.

– Jay

If you have a child with symptoms and issues related to ADHD, Asperger’s or Impulse Control, NeuroFit has created the Conquer Program to help children make friends, improve communication skills and more. The program is held at VOLT FITNESS in Glen Rock and will start in September. Enroll now, space is limited. Visit us at http://www.voltfitnessusa.com/adhd-program.html for more information or give us a call at (201) 857-4768. 

Get Fit. Make Friends. Have Fun!
VOLT FITNESS
566 S. Broad Street
Glen Rock, NJ 07452
201-857-3800
The Conquer Program

Diet and ADHD

Food affects every area of our lives. Aside from just being fuel for our bodies, we use food to cheer us up (don’t deny it), treat ourselves (that Baskin Robbins sure looks good), celebrate (chocolate cake for the promotion!), and so much more. Food affects not just our weight, but our overall health, and this includes our emotions, functionality, and behavior. The following, according to various sites, is true for individuals with symptoms of ADHD.

From MSN Healthy Living:

The B vitamins have been linked to improved neural activity and are great at reducing stress, both useful for children with ADHD. Good food sources of the B vitamins are nutritional yeast, liver, whole-grain cereals and breads, rice, nuts, milk, eggs, meats, fish, fruits, leafy green vegetables and soy.

From WebMD:

Eat fewer simple carbohydrates, such as candy, corn syrup, honey, sugar, products made from white flour, white rice, and white potatoes.

From activebeat:

Omega 3 fatty acids have been known to significantly decrease ADHD symptoms in many children. Tuna is a phenomenal source of Omega-3 fatty acids. Using tuna to make things like wraps, sandwiches and pasta salads for kids’ lunches is a great way to try and help control their symptoms

Please note, EVERY CHILD IS DIFFERENT! Anything listed here may or may not work for your child and are only intended as general guidelines. You and your child know what does, and doesn’t work best.

Over the course of 12 weeks, NeuroFit professionals will work with children and teens that suffer from symptoms of ADHD in the Conquer Program. While children learn things like how to make friends, manage impulsivity, and how to deal with rejection, healthy eating at home and at school can only help the skills taught during the social skills and executive functioning sessions.

For information on the Conquer Program, visit us online at http://www.voltfitnessusa.com/adhd-program.html or call us at 201-857-4768.

VOLT FITNESS
Get Fit. Make Friends. Have Fun!

 

A few tips for parents of children with ADHD

Executive function, as defined by the National Center for Learning Disabilities, is:

a set of mental processes that helps connect past experience with present action. People use it to perform activities such as planning, organizing, strategizing, paying attention to and remembering details, and managing time and space.

In an article from helpguide.org, the author explains how symptoms of attention deficit (hyperactivity) disorder can affect a child’s executive functioning abilities.

Although the symptoms of ADD/ADHD can be nothing short of exasperating, it’s important to remember that the child with ADD/ADHD who is ignoring, annoying, or embarrassing you is not acting willfully. Kids with ADD/ADHD want to sit quietly; they want to make their rooms tidy and organized; they want to do everything their parent says to do—but they don’t know how to make these things happen.

Now here are some tips gathered from various sites (all references will be at the end):

  • Believe in your child. Think about or make a written list of everything that is positive, valuable, and unique about your child. Trust that your child can learn, change, mature, and succeed. Make thinking about this trust a daily task as you brush your teeth or make your coffee.
  • Create consistency. Both Matlen and ADHD expert Stephanie Sarkis, Ph.D, underscored the importance of structure and consistency. Adults benefit greatly from this, too, since managing time and being organized are challenges, Matlen said. “Keeping each day as structured as possible will lessen the stress for all.”
  • Praise your child. According to Sarkis, “In an ideal world, the ratio of positive statements to negative statements should be 6 to 1.” In other words, if you criticize your child once, you should praise them at least six times.

NeuroFit has created a program that will help families understand the diagnosis and how to better help those with ADHD function in day to day activities. To learn more about our social skills and executive functioning class visit us at http://www.voltfitnessusa.com/adhd-program.html or call us at (201) 857-4768.

VOLT FITNESS
Get Fit. Make Friends. Have Fun!

Sources: www.helpguide.com, www.psychcentral.com

Language Disorders and ADHD

Children talking

One symptom in children and teens with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder can set off a chain reaction into every area of their lives. Speech language pathologist, Philippa Greathead, has found the following among adolescents with ADHD.

The types of language problems experienced by children with ADHD are varied and can cover all the modalities of language. Typically problems are seen in:

Syntax:
Disorders of syntax (oral and written grammar) are difficulties using and/or comprehending the structural components of sentences.

Semantics:
Semantic difficulties in language involve problems with word meanings and organization. School problems include difficulties comprehending written and spoken language, poor vocabulary, word-finding difficulties and difficulties using context to help with the comprehension of reading.

Pragmatics:
Pragmatics is the term used for the social use of language – i.e. the ability to use language as a means to interact with others socially or for a specific purpose (e.g. requesting information, expressing feelings, holding a conversation with people of different age levels).

Metalinguistics:
This is the ability to reflect on language objectively – to know and understand that language is a rule-bound code – e.g. humour, multimeaning in words, ambiguity, figurative language (metaphors etc), ability to segment words into syllables or phonemes (sounds).

Communication is the most important factor in any relationship. As previously posted in our blog, individuals experiencing symptoms and traits of ADHD have difficulty building and maintaining relationships. The Conquer Program was created, by NeuroFit professionals, with this trait in mind. The social skills and executive functioning portion was designed to create new friendships among the participants through the skills they learn in their group sessions. During the physical therapy portion of the program, children will be able to put their skills to practice as they interact with the other children. Each session conveniently takes place at VOLT FITNESS in Glen Rock on the Ridgewood border. If you would like to know more information, or if you would like to enroll your child or teen, please visit us at http://www.voltfitnessusa.com/adhd-program.html or give us a call at (201) 857-4768. Enroll now because space is limited. We look forward to hearing from you!

VOLT FITNESS
Get Fit. Make Friends. Have Fun!

 

ADHD Statistics Speak for Themselves

Bored Boy

The number of children and teens with symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) grows each year. Yet not every parent, teacher, or professional has been able to pinpoint whether or not the adolescents in their care have ADHD. The children whose parents and guardians have noticed these symptoms in their children have been accounted for and according to The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the statistics speak for themselves.

Bored Boy

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Key Findings: Trends in the Parent-Report of Health Care Provider-Diagnosis and Medication Treatment for ADHD: United States, 2003-2011 [data from the National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) 2003 to 2011]. For children ages 4-17 years of age, highlighted data include:

  • 5.1 million children (8.8% or 1 in 11 of this age group 4-17 years) have a current diagnosis of ADHD:
    • 6.8% of children ages 4-10 (1 in 15)
    • 11.4% of children ages 11-14 (1 in 9)
    • 10.2% of children ages 15-17 (1 in 10)
  • The average age of current ADHD diagnosis was 6.2 years, including:
    • “Mild” ADHD diagnosed at 7 years,
    •  “Moderate” ADHD diagnosed at 6.1 years, and
    •  “Severe” ADHD diagnosed at 4.4 years.
  • 3.5 million children (69% of children with current ADHD) were taking medication for ADHD.
  • Boys (12.1%) continue to be more than twice as likely than girls (5.5%) to have current ADHD.
  • Current ADHD prevalence rates vary between states, with Nevada having the lowest rate at 4.2% and Kentucky having the highest rate of 14.8%.
  • According to the parent reports, 6.4 million children (11% of this age group 4-17 years) have ever been diagnosed with ADHD, and rates of ever-diagnosed ADHD increased an average of approximately 5% per year from 2003 to 2011.

The NeuroFit professionals in Glen Rock, NJ have taken notice of these staggering statistics and have formulated a program that combines both physical therapy and group sessions that focus on social skills and executive functioning. During the course of this program, children will learn skills to help them make new friends, maintain these relationships, and how to manage their behavior. The program will take place over a period of 12 weeks at VOLT FITNESS. If you have a child or teen with symptoms and associated issues related to ADHD, please call (201) 857-4768 or visit us at www.voltfitnessusa.com/adhd-program.html for more details.

VOLT FITNESS
GET FIT. MAKE FRIENDS. HAVE FUN!
(201) 857-3800