A psychologist at the University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Gwagwalada, Dr Andrew Zamani has urged parents to improve communication with their children to avoid development disorders.
Zamani, in an interview with newsmen in Abuja on Monday, said development disorder, called Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), is caused by a troubled mind.
In his words “Restlessness, inattentiveness, hyperactivity are symptoms of a developmental disorder whose major cause is anxiety and sense of insecurity.
“ADHD is derived from a troubled mind beleaguered by a sense of loneliness, insecurity, separation, anxiety and fear of rejection, whose unconscious processing results in distractibility and attention seeking behaviour and restlessness.’’
Zamani advised parents to limit the way they punished their children because it aggravated the situation by either intimidating them into silence or increasing their hyperactivity.
He urged parents to show love to their children to make them feel appreciated and important, adding that love gives confidence and courage to live a fulfilled life.
“Children who are loved and appreciated by their parents tend to be achievement- oriented, good risk takers and don’t shirk responsibility in any way.
“Such children even take responsibility for wrongdoing without much objection; they will always have high self esteem”. He added.
“Possessive parents place limitations on the emotional growth and development of their children; they cause them to doubt themselves and to give up trying.
“Parents and children should be friends in every sense of the word to strengthen emotional bonds.’’ He continued.
The psychologist described discipline as a character trait which required parents to be genuine, consistent and firm in the lessons they teach their children.
Zamani said that children learn more from a character of integrity than authoritarian force.
He said a parent who instills discipline in children, combines reward and punishment appropriately.
According to him if a child did not do well in school, parents should take time to find out the reason because the child might not be at fault.
The psychologist said the child might be suffering victimisation from teachers or the teachers might not be qualified.
He further advised parents to also teach their children at home as children tend to learn faster when taught by their parents.
“It pays for parents to teach their children life skills to enable them to deal with peer pressure and social challenges that may have lifelong impact in their lives,’’ he added.