Hypothetical patient portrayal

Parenting a Child with ADHD

Parenting doesn’t come with a handbook. However, these useful tips and shared advice may help you and your child. Share them with grandparents and other caregivers (babysitters, etc) so they can follow them as well. Select a subject to learn more.
  • Ideas for Helping Your Child at Home

    Ideas for Helping Your Child at Home

    Provide structure.

    Keep a routine and go with a similar schedule every day, from morning till lights out. Include time for homework, activities, etc. And write down any changes to the schedule in advance.

    Have a place for everything.

    And keep everything in its place: clothing, books, etc.

    Create an organizational system.

    Come up with a system for writing down homework assignments and tests and for planning out projects.

    Post a chart of household chores.

    Check off items as they’re completed.

    Be clear and consistent with your child.

    Children with or without ADHD need rules they can follow.

    Praise good behavior.

    Children with ADHD often expect criticism. Reward them when they follow the rules.

    Respond when rules are broken.

    Children want to be independent and try new things. If they break the rules, maintain calm and be matter-of-fact in your response. Sometimes it helps to have a short time-out to calm down.

    Try a tutor or coach.

    Consider using a tutor to help your child work on learning and studying strategies.

  • Ideas for Helping Your Child at School

    Ideas for Helping Your Child at School

    Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act
    (Section 504 for short) provides things like a recorder for note-taking, a quiet place to work, and access to a computer in school for written work. 

    The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA)
    has a provision called the Individualized Education Program (IEP for short). It’s a comprehensive plan for addressing your child’s specific learning needs.

    6 Steps to Navigating the School System
    is a guide to seeking help for your child at school.

  • Ideas for Limiting Procrastination

    Ideas for Limiting Procrastination

    Work with your child
    to put together a to-do list.

    Encourage your child
    to ask, “How much time do I need for this task?”

    Help your child determine
    “Do I know how to do this? Who do I know that can help?”

    Prompt your child
    to ask, “Do I have the materials I need?”

  • Ideas for Helping Your Child Get Organized

    Ideas for Helping Your Child Get Organized

    Create a plan
    for schoolwork and other activities in an assignment notebook.

    Color-code books
    file folders, and other materials. 

    Use a timer or alarm
    to help with managing time.

    Keep things simple
    breaking down large tasks into more manageable steps.

  • Ideas for Boosting Your Child’s Confidence

    Ideas for Boosting Your Child’s Confidence

    Tell your child your love is unconditional.
    Let your child know that together you’ll get through the good and not-so-good moments.

    Play to their strengths.
    Many children with ADHD have strengths in areas like art and computers, just to name a few. 

    Make time just for them.
    Special time together can help your child maintain feelings of self-worth.

  • Ideas for Working with Your Child

    Ideas for Working with Your Child

    Be consistent with rules.

    When you make rules, make them simple and specific. 

    Be clear.

    Provide clear expectations, directions, and limits. 

    Stay calm.

    Try to remain patient and calm when dealing with your child.

    Provide positive reinforcement.

    Look for every opportunity to praise your child.

    Use “do” statements

    in place of “don’t” statements. Example: “Use your inside voice” instead of “don’t shout.” 

    Set up routines.

    Have routines for getting ready for school, mealtime, homework, and bedtime and stick to them as closely as you can.

    Take the good with the bad.

    Expect that children will have good days and bad days.

  • Tips for seeking support

    Tips for Seeking Support

    Involve other adults in your child’s life.
    Work with family members or teachers to agree on how to handle various issues as they arise.

    Join an ADHD support group.
    Meeting up with like-minded parents of children with ADHD could make all the difference.
    Check CHADD or ADDA to see what they may have available.

    Request professional help.
    Ask your doctor or your child’s guidance counselor if they can refer you to counseling or coaching resources for your child.


Vyvanse® is a federally controlled substance (CII) because it can be abused or lead to dependence. Keep Vyvanse in a safe place to prevent misuse and abuse. Selling or giving away Vyvanse may harm others, and is against the law.

Vyvanse is a stimulant medicine. Tell the doctor if you or your child have ever abused or been dependent on alcohol, prescription medicines, or street drugs.

Who should not take Vyvanse?

Do not take Vyvanse if you or your child is:

  • taking or has taken an anti-depression medicine called a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) within the past 14 days.
  • sensitive or allergic to, or had a reaction to other stimulant medicines.

Problems that can occur while taking Vyvanse. Tell the doctor:

  • if you or your child have heart problems or heart defects, high blood pressure, or a family history of these problems. This is important because sudden death has occurred in people with heart problems or defects, and sudden death, stroke and heart attack have happened in adults. Since increases in blood pressure and heart rate may occur, the doctor should regularly check these during treatment. Call the doctor right away if you or your child have any signs of heart problems such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or fainting while taking Vyvanse.
  • if you or your child have mental problems, or a family history of suicide, bipolar illness, or depression. This is important because new or worsening behavior and thought problems or bipolar illness may occur. New symptoms such as seeing or hearing things that are not real, believing things that are not true, being suspicious, or having new manic symptoms may occur. Call the doctor right away if there are any new or worsening mental symptoms during treatment.
  • if you or your child have circulation problems in fingers and toes (peripheral vasculopathy, including Raynaud’s phenomenon). Fingers or toes may feel numb, cool, painful, sensitive to temperature and/or change color from pale, to blue, to red. Call the doctor right away if any signs of unexplained wounds appear on fingers or toes while taking Vyvanse.
  • if your child is having slowing of growth (height and weight); Vyvanse may cause this serious side effect. Your child should have his or her height and weight checked often while taking Vyvanse. The doctor may stop treatment if a problem is found during these check-ups.
  • if you or your child are pregnant, breast-feeding, or plan to become pregnant or breast-feed.

What are possible side effects of Vyvanse?

The most common side effects of Vyvanse reported in ADHD studies include:

    • anxiety
    • decreased appetite
    • diarrhea
    • dizziness
    • dry mouth
    • irritability
    • loss of appetite
    • nausea
    • trouble sleeping
    • upper stomach pain
    • vomiting
    • weight loss

The most common side effects of Vyvanse reported in studies of adults with moderate to severe B.E.D. include:

    • dry mouth
    • trouble sleeping
    • decreased appetite
    • increased heart rate
    • constipation
    • feeling jittery
    • anxiety


Vyvanse® (lisdexamfetamine dimesylate) is a prescription medicine used for the treatment of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in patients 6 years and above, and for the treatment of moderate to severe Binge Eating Disorder (B.E.D.) in adults. Vyvanse is not for weight loss. It is not known if Vyvanse is safe and effective for the treatment of obesity.

For additional safety information, click here for Prescribing Information and Medication Guide and discuss with your doctor.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/medwatch, or call 1-800-FDA-1088.