What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a behavioural disorder. Symptoms include difficulties with attention, hyperactivity and impulsive behaviour. The condition can vary in its severity and impact. Usually, diagnosed between the ages of 6 and 12, ADHD affects the person that experiences the disorder as well as those around, such as caregivers, family, and teachers.
The illness is unrelated to social class, ethnicity or background. However, ADHD is more prevalent in individuals with a learning difficulty. The cause of ADHD is currently unknown. Some studies have suggested that it can run in families. On average, 2.2% of children and adolescents worldwide suffer from ADHD. Although this figure varies considerably according to different studies.
What are the main symptoms of ADHD?
Some of the most common signs and symptoms to look out for regarding whether someone might meet criteria for a diagnosis of ADHD include:
- Being easily distracted
- Struggling to pay attention for long periods of time (or any period of time)
- Difficulty organising themselves
- Making mistakes on work
- Difficulties controlling their verbal chat, including interrupting others
- Forgetting things
- Losing things
- Difficulty listening to instructions
- Impulsive behaviour
- Difficulties sitting still
- Fidgeting and excessive movement
- Difficulties concentrating
- Little sense of danger or risk
- Difficulties waiting their turn
When does ADHD become a problem and what treatments are available?
Young people with ADHD can display challenging behaviour which can be difficult for caregivers, family and teachers to manage. The symptoms described can result in children having difficulties in school as well as at home. This can result in underachievement, difficulties with friendships, and stressful home environments. However, it is important to remember that young people with ADHD struggle to control their behaviour and often need support.
Although there is no cure for ADHD, it can be managed effectively with a range of treatments.
- Familial and educational advice and support
- Behaviour therapy or Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT)
- Social skills training
If you need support with ADHD or would like to try one of the ranges of treatments above, please contact one of our clinicians for more information.
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