What You Need to Know About Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): A Practical Introduction to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder for Children and Adultsby Sarah Erickson
ADHD has a wide range of symptoms and it can be confusing and stressful for the child or teen. Young people mature at different rates and have different personalities, temperaments, and energy levels. Most of
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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a term used to describe a group of behaviors that most often appear in young, school-aged children.
ADHD has a wide range of symptoms and it can be confusing and stressful for the child or teen. Young people mature at different rates and have different personalities, temperaments, and energy levels. Most of us get distracted, act impulsively, and struggle to pay attention at one time or another. It is when symptoms such as these, or acting in impulsive or reckless ways, daydreaming , becoming easily confused, or trouble sitting still for any length of time are hurting school work or impairing social activities that ADHD should be looked into.
Most ADHD symptoms usually appear early in life, often between the ages of 3 and 6. No single test can diagnose ADHD, but a licensed health professional such as a pediatrician or mental health specialist with experience in childhood mental disorders can first try to rule out other reasons for the symptoms.
Scientists are not sure what causes ADHD, although many studies suggest that genes (the “blueprints” for who we are) play a large role. Like many other illnesses, ADHD probably results from a combination of genetic and environmental factors such as nutrition, brain injuries, or social environment.
Most children with ADHD continue to have symptoms as they enter adolescence. Some may not be diagnosed until then. It’s not easy being a teenager, but for a teenager with ADHD, it can be especially hard. Staying with the recommended treatments, prescribed medications, psychosocial interventions, or a combination of the two, is also a challenge. Since inattention can be a problem, driving is another major concern for those with ADHD. Working cooperatively with parents, schools, and health care professionals is key.
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