• How to Tell If Your Child Has ADHD

    by Caroline Ryther
    on Jul 9th, 2018

Most children are these tiny, energetic human beings who get fidgety when sitting for prolonged periods of time or become pretty hyperactive when playing with friends in the park. They sometimes have trouble concentrating and daydream their classes away, and it could still mean nothing in the medical sense.

However, the moment this wild energy or inability to focus turns into disruptive patterns that affect their everyday lives is when you should begin to consider that your child might have ADHD (attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder). The first step to addressing this problem is to learn more about this disorder and to recognize its signs and symptoms.

What Is ADHD?

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, ADHD (previously known as ADD i.e. attention deficit disorder) stands for “attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, a brain disorder marked by an ongoing pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development”.

Children with ADHD are usually marked as troublemakers in school, because they never seem to listen, don’t follow instructions, or blurt out inappropriate comments when the time just isn’t right. They are described as lazy and undisciplined, due to the fact that they can’t pay attention to tasks and act as they don’t care about anything.

The signs and symptoms of ADHD typically appear before the age of seven, but older kids (teenagers) can have this disorder, as well. And although a lot of people associate ADHD with hyperactivity, the truth is that kids with can also be calm and quiet, miles away in their mind, and still have ADHD.

ADHD Types: Inattentive, Hyperactive, or Impulsive?

The three main characteristics of ADHD are hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention, and the symptoms a child displays depend solely on which of these characteristics are predominant for their personality. One does not exclude another, however, so your child can be:

How Do I Know If My Child Has ADHD?

According to American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual IV, if a child has ADHD, he or she would have displayed at least six of the nine symptoms found below for at least six months.

The inattentive type often:

The hyperactive type often:

Treating a Child Who Has Attention-deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Kids who aren’t able to focus and can’t control themselves may get into trouble, find it difficult to make friends, and struggle in school. All of this can lead to low self-esteem later in life, and cause stress for the whole family. In short: if left untreated, ADHD can be the root of a number of problems for your child and you.

The good thing about ADHD is that you can treat it even without an official diagnosis. If you notice that your child is hyperactive or inattentive, you can try modifying your home environment in order to minimize distractions, and implementing a better diet and exercise plan.

In case your child is diagnosed with ADHD, you can work with a doctor, therapist, and even teachers to create a treatment plan that will meet your kid’s needs. Behavioral therapy, social support, parent education and training, and assistance at school are just some of treatment options you can use to assist your child in overcoming this disorder. Medication can also be used in treatment, but keep in mind that it should never be your only option.

If you believe that your child has ADHD, don’t hesitate to contact Dr. Best and the team of the Neuroscience Center—they will help you with the diagnosis and recommend the right treatment for your child.

 

Schedule a consultation today:

Phone: 847-306-8938

Email: pm@mind.md

 

Author Caroline Ryther

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