Medication isn't the only answer.
Adding behavioral strategies to drug therapy is helpful for kids of all ages. Parents can learn specific ways to praise and reward their child for good behavior, such as completing chores or doing his homework, and to take away privileges when he jumps on the furniture or refuses to sit quietly at the table. "Even if they take medication, children with ADHD still need help with key life skills like organization and time management," says Ann Abramowitz, PhD, chair of the professional advisory board for the nonprofit Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. In fact, some kids improve so much with combined treatment that they're able to reduce their dose of medication. Although many kids with ADHD have tried some form of alternative treatment, such as vitamins, dietary changes, or biofeedback, there hasn't been enough research to prove that these offer any benefits. A recent study in the Journal of the American Medical Association, for example, found that the herb St. John's wort was no more effective than a placebo for kids with ADHD.