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Understanding Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Understanding Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

If your child has shown symptoms of ADHD on a regular basis for more than 6 months, discuss this with your pediatrician.”

  • According to national data, ADHD affects about 9.4% of U.S. children ages 2-17―including 2.4% of children ages 2-5 and 4%-12% of school-aged children.
  • Boys are more than twice as likely as girls to be diagnosed with ADHD.
  • Both boys and girls with the disorder typically show symptoms of an additional mental disorder and may also have learning and language problems.
ADHD is a chronic condition of the brain that makes it difficult for children to control their behavior
  • Children with ADHD often have trouble getting along with siblings and other children at school, at home, and in other settings. Those who have trouble paying attention usually have trouble learning. An impulsive nature may put them in actual physical danger. Because children with ADHD have difficulty controlling this behavior, they may be labeled “bad kids” or “space cadets.”
  • Effective treatment is available. If your child has ADHD, your pedia­trician can offer a long-term treatment plan to help your child lead a happy and healthy life. As a parent, you have a very important role in this treatment.
  • Left untreated, ADHD in some children will continue to cause ­serious, lifelong ­problems, such as poor grades in school, run-ins with the law, failed relationships, and the inability to keep a job.

ADHD includes 3 groups of behavior symptoms: inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity

Symptoms of ADHD
  1. Inattention
  • Often has a hard time paying attention, daydreams
  • Often does not seem to listen
  • Is easily distracted from work or play
  • Often does not seem to care about details, makes careless mistakes
  • Frequently does not follow through on instructions or finish tasks
  • Is disorganized
  • Frequently loses a lot of important things
  • Often forgets things
  • Frequently avoids doing things that require ongoing mental effort

2.  Hyperactivity

  • Is in constant motion, as if “driven by a motor”
  • Cannot stay seated
  • Frequently squirms and fidgets
  • Talks too much
  • Often runs, jumps, and climbs when this is not permitted
  • Cannot play quietly

3.  Impulsivity

  • Frequently acts and speaks without thinking
  • May run into the street without looking for traffic first
  • Frequently has trouble taking turns
  • Cannot wait for things
  • Often calls out answers before the question is complete
  • Frequently interrupts others

Not all children with ADHD have all the symptoms

  • Children with ADHD may have one or more of the symptom groups (inattention, hyperactivity, impulsivity). The symptoms are usually classified by the following types of ADHD:
  • Inattentive only (formerly known as attention-deficit disorder [ADD]) — Children with this form of ADHD are not overly active. Because they do not disrupt the classroom or other activities, their symptoms may not be noticed. Among girls with ADHD, this form is more common.
  • Hyperactive/impulsive — Children with this type of ADHD show both hyperactive and impulsive behavior, but they can pay attention. They are the least common group and are frequently younger.
  • Combined inattentive/hyperactive/impulsive — Children with this type of ADHD show a number of symptoms in all 3 dimensions. It is the type that most people think of when they think of ADHD.

This information was obtained from (Official website of American Academy of Pediatrics designed to educate parents.)

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