If your teen is facing problems at school in terms of focus, concentration and motivation, don’t panic because you are not alone! We all know what it’s like – everything seems fine and dandy until one day, the report card comes through the mail and you get a phone call from the school requesting a meeting between you and Jack’s teacher. Classic. The teacher starts pointing out Jack’s inability to stay on task, his inappropriate comments, and his ‘could-be-improved’ organization skills. You want to help and ensure that Jack does well in his History class, but you continue struggling to find ways of helping him overcome these attention and focus issues.
Particularly during teenage years, a lack of focus can be detrimental towards studies and overall academic performance. While some choose to treat these ADHD/ADD issues with prescription medications such as Adderall, others pick the more natural (aka not-so-effective) route using herbal remedies. As a parent myself, I understand just how frustrating it can be to constantly fail in your attempt of helping your teen. First of all, don’t be so hard on yourself. You’re trying your best and everyone is only human. Secondly, don’t lose hope. Even if you think you’ve tried everything out there to help tackle those ADHD symptoms, I bet you there are still a few tips and tricks that haven’t crossed your mind or haven’t popped up during your late-night Google search adventures.
We hope that the following list of easy, focus-boosting tips can help you through your journey with your teen. So without further ado, here are 4 simple yet effective ways for your child to improve focus and hopefully perform better at school:
- Say Yes to Games.
Hold on, we’re not saying that you should encourage your teen to pull all-nighters with their eyes glued to that PS4 and those thumbs endlessly clicking the remote thingamajig (although some video games can improve creativity!). However, certain games have been specifically designed to improve attention and focus. One of our favorites is a site called PlayAttention.com, where your child can learn to improve their organization skills and ignore distractions. Certain brain technologies are specially engineered to produce the right frequency sounds to improve concentration by signaling the right brain wave production. Focus-boosting games have even been proven to improve memory, so we recommend giving it a go and encouraging your teen to get their headset on.
- Avoid Total Silences!
Staying in a room that is completely silent and with no sound can be distracting to those suffering from ADD/ADHD. Teens with attention issues more or less rely heavily on their surroundings to stimulate them, and so when they find themselves alone in a room that is completely silent, it may feel like a suffocating vacuum. Many psychologists have encouraged the use of soft, low volume music as background noise. Even putting on the air-con or a fan is sufficient noise to clear up distractions and induce focus.
- Get Him/Her a Stress Ball.
It’s a million times harder for teenagers with ADD/ADHD or any kind of attention issues to stay on task and remain focused. Imagine that your mind is constantly running in 20 different directions and that every thought, sound, smell and sight unavoidably forms into a distraction. This is often why teens (or even adults!) with attention problems tend to constantly fidget, bite their nails, press their knuckles, or play with writing tools (i.e. pens, pencils, etc).
One trick is to give your teen a stress or fidget toy, like a squeeze ball. Encouraging them to squeeze the ball under the table when they feel anxious, agitated or distracted may help them to relieve stress and pay more attention to the teacher. It can even be used at home while reading or taking notes to prevent any kind of visual or auditory distractions.
- Try Nootropics.
While the three tips above can certainly help your child keep calm and stay focused during Math class, the use of medication for teen ADHD may be needed for more severe cases. The biggest problem with prescription meds from the doc’s office, however, is that they come with a crap ton of side effects. Teens who use meds such as Adderall/Ritalin, for instance, have experienced anxiety, sleep problems, headaches, dizziness, and even addiction. This is why many parents are looking for better and safer alternatives, such as focus-enhancing supplements.
This is where nootropics come in.
These bad boys are cognitive enhancing supplements that may boost memory, learning abilities, focus, concentration, verbal fluency and more. They work primarily by increasing blood flow to the brain, which improves focus and allows you to stay concentrated without getting distracted for longer periods of time. Some nootropics also work with neurotransmitter levels in the brain. Noopept, for example, is arguably one of the most effective and powerful nootropics available in the market today. It increases acetylcholine levels in the brain, which are neurotransmitters responsible for learning. Nootropic stacks are often praised for their ability to bring results without carrying negative side effects.
One of our favorite brands is Lumonol by Avanse Nutraceuticals. This supplement contains a great blend of nootropics that work to boost memory and improve concentration. Most importantly, Lumonol’s formula includes compounds that reduce anxiety and decrease stress, which is perfect for teens with ADD/ADHD who need help to keep their head down and stay focused during school days. Check out our review of Lumonol to learn more!