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 behavioural difficulties.
University of New Zealand researchers Dr Nike Franke and Dr Louise Keown said parents often find the extreme behaviours 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 behaviour was much easier to manage.
Triple P Online is one of the many Triple P programs available free to Queensland parents and carers as part of a Queensland Government-funded initiative.
Triple P – Positive Parenting Program Queensland Director Carol Markie-Dadds said more than 10,000 Queenslanders had done Triple P Online since the initiative launched last year.
Ms Markie-Dadds said being able to complete a parenting program anonymously via the internet at home and at their own pace was a highly effective way of helping mums and dads adopt new coping and parenting strategies.
“Triple P Online is proving particularly popular with time-poor and isolated parents looking for tips to create a harmonious home,’ she said.
“Children raised in a calm, consistent and positive home environment are more likely to succeed at school, have better jobs, experience more positive relationships and enjoy better mental and physical health.
“Parents who do Triple P are also more likely to have lower levels of depression, anxiety and stress, so there are plenty of good reasons for parents to learn more about how to parent positively.”