ADHD fully known as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects the brain of people, especially kids. It also affects adults and adolescents, but it is more common among kids.
ADHD doesn’t have a specific cause but following the US center for disease control, the neurodevelopmental issue is said to be caused by brain injury, premature childbirth, etc. With proper research, the cause of ADHD might also be related to genetic and environmental factors.
This disorder is not caused by bad parenting or lack of discipline. However, these two factors might help to stimulate ADHD.
This disorder can grow with a kid from childhood to adulthood if proper care is not taken.
ADHD can be very hard to deal with, kids suffering from ADHD pay little or no attention in school or at home, and they also act without thinking even if their actions might pose harm to others.
Let’s take a look at some of the symptoms of ADHD in kids.
Symptoms of ADHD in kids
- Difficulty paying attention or staying focused on tasks.
- Inability to sit still or stay organized.
- Impulsivity, or acting without thinking.
- Difficulty following instructions or completing tasks.
- Disorganization and forgetfulness
- Daydreaming and murmuring to oneself
Looking at these symptoms, you can tell that ADHD will be very hard to deal with. In a family where one of the kids suffers from ADHD, it can be so devastating and saddening. However, this health disorder can be controlled.
Let’s look at some of the ways you can help children with ADHD.
How can you Help Children with ADHD?
There are so many ways you can assist children with ADHD and some of the ways include:
- Providing a structured and predictable environment
- Engaging them in physical activities
- Help the child stay organized.
- Train them with positive reinforcement
- Help the child develop social skills.
- Encourage the child to express their feelings.
- Work with the child’s school
Apart from all these, another way you can help children with ADHD is by using Service Dogs. Let’s discuss extensively on this.
Can Service Dogs Help Children with ADHD?
Fortunately, YES. Service dogs can serve as a major help to children with ADHD.
Over the years, the capability of service dogs has been limited to offering only physical assistance such as helping a blind person to navigate his way or fetching some materials for people who have problems with mobility.
However, this is not the only thing service dogs can do. These dogs have been trained to assist men in various ways. They can help people suffering from mental or emotional issues, they can also help people living with disabilities such as ADHD.
How can Service Dogs Help Children with ADHD?
Some of the ways service dogs assist people living with ADHD include:
- They provide a calm environment: Service dogs can provide emotional support and help a child with ADHD feel calmer and more focused. They help to clear distractions and make the kid focused.
- They help to interrupt self-harming behaviors: Service dogs can be trained to intervene if a child with ADHD is engaging in self-harming behaviors, such as head-banging or self-hitting.
- They alert people of incoming dangers: Due to the intelligence of service dogs, these dogs can detect dangers faster and they will quickly alert their handler about the danger. Service dogs can be trained to alert their handler to potential dangers, such as oncoming traffic or objects falling from shelves.
- They provide Physical Support: ADHD is not always accompanied by debilities. However, people living with ADHD are also physically disabled. It might be the inability to walk well or talk well or even ear problems. Service dogs can help this person provide physical support, such as helping them balance while walking or getting up from a seated position.
- They help to build confidence: Service dogs help kids with ADHD build confidence in themselves. They help them increase their self-esteem.
What are the Best Dog Breeds for people with ADHD?
There are no certain dog breeds best suited for people with ADHD. However, some dogs will be more efficient due to their level of intelligence and ability to provide a safe and comfortable environment for their handler.
Some of the best dog breeds for people with ADHD include:
These dogs listed above are calm, they are also intelligent, and they have faster learning paces. These dogs are mostly used as service dogs for people with ADHD due to their ability to provide a good environment for their handler, help to easily detect incoming danger, and also able to provide physical support.
How Do I qualify for a service dog?
If you are living with ADHD or you know someone living with ADHD and you want to get a service dog for the person, there are some criteria this person must pass. According to the Official Service & Support Animal Registration these criteria include:
- The person must be above 12 years.
- You must be able to control the dogs.
- You should not have any other dogs at home.
- You must be truly diagnosed with physical disabilities or a neurological disorder that hinders you physically.
- You must be staying in a conducive environment.
As a person with ADHD, these are the criteria you have to pass before you can finally obtain a service dog.
If you don’t qualify to obtain a service dog, then you can consider an Emotional Support Animal. You can easily obtain an Emotional Support Animal. However, the ESA will only be providing emotional support and ensuring you are free from anxiety.
How do I apply for a service dog?
For a person living with ADHD, you have to inform your ADHD care provider first, he will be able to let you know if what you need is service dogs or an emotional support animal.
If he has given you the go-ahead to get a service dog, you can apply for a well-trained service dog from the organization service dogs for America.
You should also ensure that the service dog has been well-trained. Purchasing an improperly trained service dog might pose threat to you and it might also lead to punishment by the American Disabilities Act
Service dogs can be a valuable resource for children with ADHD, but it is important to keep in mind that they can’t provide all solutions to them.
It is also important to note that service dogs require a significant time and financial commitment, as they must be trained and cared for properly.
If you are considering a service dog for a child with ADHD, it is important to speak to a mental health professional and a service dog organization to determine if a service dog is an appropriate and realistic option.
The short and best answer to the query “Can I get a service dog for Children with ADHD?” is YES.