Children tend to have a lot of energy. Almost all of them have rambunctious days, and most can long outlast moms and dads on a playground. So if you have a little trouble getting a kid to settle down and focus, it may not be cause for concern. In some cases, however, a child's negative behavior patterns and high energy level might indicate that he or she has ADHD.
When a child has ADHD, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, his brain has a malfunction that results in a lowered ability to control impulses, behavior and/or attention span [source: O'Regan]. This may result in that child being hard to control, temperamental or needy for attention. Parenting is always a challenge, but if your child has a disorder, it can be that much harder. For example, children with ADHD may struggle in school or have self-esteem issues, thus requiring added attention and diligence from parents [source: Mayo Clinic].
If you're the parent of a child who has ADHD, you're probably well aware of these challenges and face them on a daily basis. That's why it's important for every child and parent to remember that ADHD is an extremely common condition. In fact, some studies show that around 5 percent of children have some form of ADHD [source: O'Regan]. In other words, you're not alone.
Since many school children have some form of ADHD, there are plenty of other families dealing with issues similar to yours. A parent-to-parent network can help you connect with these families so that you can communicate with each other. By spending time sharing stories and advice and asking questions, you may be able to learn more about your child's condition -- and receive some emotional support for yourself, too.
To learn more about how to use parent-to-parent networks, read on to the next page.