Emotional and Mental Health

ADHD: Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Written by
Dr. Vasantha K S
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.

Published on Mar 17, 2018 and last reviewed on Sep 07, 2018   -  3 min read

Abstract

Abstract

It is a condition that is characterized by inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsiveness.

ADHD: Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

ADHD is a behavioral condition that interferes focus, self-control, functioning and social skills. People with this condition have trouble with time management, dealing with emotions, remembering things, completing tasks, and difficulty in controlling their impulsive behavior.

Symptoms

symptoms show up at different ages in different people. They may be diagnosed early in life or well into adulthood when they are faced with situations that demand being organized and social. It is important to note that there is no impact on the child's IQ. They are as smart as their peers. Although they appear to lack focus, they can excessively focus on certain tasks which they find interesting.

There are two categories of symptoms in ADHD which includes

Symptoms of inattention:

  • Overlook details.
  • Make careless mistakes.
  • Problem giving attention to the task at hand.
  • Do not realize when their name is called.
  • Do not follow instructions or directions.
  • Easily gets distracted or sidetracked.
  • Problem with organizing their things.

Symptoms of hyperactivity-impulsivity:

  • Restless in their seats.
  • Run around when inappropriate.
  • Cannot pursue hobbies patiently.
  • Interrupts others during discussions.
  • Blurts out the answer before the question is done.
  • Has a hard time waiting for their turn.

Causes

Comparative studies of brain images of children with ADHD and those without, have shown that, in kids with ADHD, specific parts of the brain involved in executive functioning develops slower than children their age. This is the reason kids with ADHD act younger than their peers.

Risk factors

  1. Genetics do play a major role.
  2. Premature birth.
  3. Exposure to smoking, alcohol, drug use or environmental toxins during early childhood or the mother during pregnancy.
  4. Brain injuries.

Warning signs

Consult the child's pediatrician if you notice some of the worrying signs.

- Forgets things instantly.

- Fail to finish what they started.

- Demanding on the teachers at school.

- Behave rashly when taken outside.

- Seem unpopular with their peers.

Diagnosis

There are no imaging tests to detect ADHD. Instead, the doctor will use a combination of history from the child's parents, feedback from school teachers, and a set of questions about the child's behavior that is to be answered by the parents.

Treatment

There is no cure for ADHD. The simultaneous use of medication and psychotherapy such as cognitive behavior therapy is found to be very beneficial in managing their symptoms.

Tips to manage ADHD

As parents, it can get challenging to handle a child diagnosed with ADHD and there may be many questions arising in your head. It is important to realize that it is not that the child is unwilling to focus on what he is doing, but he or she is unable to. Once you are clear about this, you can gradually work out a strategy that works best for you and your child as well as others in the family. Here is how you can help your child 'fit in'.

  1. Primarily, understand the condition in depth. Read up or attend seminars to comprehend the issues that the child is undergoing.
  2. Join support groups to connect with other parents with similar concerns so you can discuss with them regarding latest updates on treatments and to know about specialists near you.
  3. Take stress management lessons to help deal with frustrations arising from day-to-day situations.
  4. Fix a schedule or routine for your child by allotting specific times in the day for specific activities such as playtime, mealtime, homework, computer usage (screen time) and bedtime.
  5. Segregate and organize your child's belongings such as books, clothes, toys, stationeries, school supplies, etc., and explain the importance of staying organized.
  6. Be clear with directions. Keep it short and crisp.
  7. Make a list of tasks to complete and stick it somewhere visible for them.
  8. Breakdown large instructions into simpler steps and give them as separate instructions.
  9. Praise your child when they complete a task, even if it feels like a small one for you.

For more information consult an attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder ADHD specialist online --> https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/psychiatrist/attention-deficit-hyperactivity-disorder-ADHD

Last reviewed at:
07 Sep 2018  -  3 min read

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