Triple P Online can improve children’s ADHD symptoms and reduce parents’ stress, a New Zealand trial has found.
The University of Auckland study, the first in the world to show that an online program can generate improvements for families of children with ADHD, was published in the Journal of Attention Disorders.
It involved 53 New Zealand families with a child aged three or four with extreme levels of hyperactivity and inattentiveness.
The families enrolled in the eight-module online version of the Triple P – Positive Parenting Program to learn practical strategies to manage behavioral difficulties.
University of New Zealand researchers Dr Nike Franke and Dr Louise Keown said parents often find the extreme behaviors of children with ADHD challenging and stressful.
“(The children) can also have difficulties in social situations with their peers, and parents can feel embarrassed, ashamed and blame themselves,” said Dr Keown.
But after doing Triple P Online, parents reported significantly lower levels of stress and depression and greater parenting satisfaction, she said.
Many parents reported feeling more confident in their parenting skills and that their child’s behavior was much easier to manage.
“An effective online program means parents can get help in their own homes easily and anonymously which is what many parents want,” said Dr Keown.
“ADHD behaviors are associated with long-term problems such as difficult relationships with parents, teachers and peers, and poor academic performance, so it is best to intervene as early as possible.”