Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

What is ADHD?

ADHD, also known as Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder is a common neurodevelopmental pediatric disorder where a child may have difficulty staying focused and paying attention and difficulty controlling behaviour and hyperactivity. ADHD usually has a childhood-onset and can continue later if not treated early. It is more common in males, and if spotted during early school, it is easier to treat with behavioural therapy.

Symptoms of ADHD can hinder your day to day life and interfere with schoolwork, office work, completing daily chores and even maintaining relationships with people. The sooner the diagnosis, the sooner the treatment will take effect.

Among other issues like difficulty initiating and maintaining relationships or fitting in a crowd, there are three issues that all ADHD patients face that are the root of the problem and are the central area of treatment.

Patients with ADHD face three kinds of major problems-

1-Overactive behaviour

2-Impulsive behaviour

3-Difficulty in paying attention

Signs and symptoms used to recognize if you or someone you know has ADHD-

Some of the signs of ADHD in children are-

1-Inattentive

1-Daydreaming

2-Forgetting or losing things a lot

3-Easily distracted

4-Making careless mistakes or taking unnecessary risks

5-Have difficulty getting along with others

2-Hyperactive-impulsive

1-Fidgeting

2-Difficulty staying in one place

3-Talking excessively

4-Hav trouble waiting for their turn

5-Impatient with tasks and people

Some of the signs of ADHD in adults-

1-Anxiety

2-Low self-esteem

3-Trouble controlling anger

4-Procrastination

5-Trouble concentrating while reading

6-Mood swings

ADHD in adults is commonly never diagnosed, due to which the symptoms can cause issues with work or relationships. Symptoms for adults are primarily hyperactive behaviour which can appear as extreme restlessness, which can become more severe with age if not treated.

There are three different kinds of ADHD found in people, and it is essential to understand each to determine which category you or your loved one fit in to choose which line of treatment one should follow.

 

The three different types of ADHD are-

1-Predominantly Inattentive Presentation– It is tough to organize or finish a task, pay attention to details or follow instructions and conversations.

2-Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation: It is tough to sit still for a while, and involuntary fidgeting and an urge to talk endlessly. With impulsive behaviour, one would often interrupt others, grab things from people or speak at inappropriate times.

3-Combined Presentation: A combined Presentation is when the symptoms of Predominantly Inattentive Presentation and Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation are equally visible in the patient.

Diagnosing ADHD in a patient

Understanding if a child has ADHD takes several steps. Unlike those for anxiety and depression, a single test can’t determine if you have ADHD. Depression, anxiety, certain kinds of learning disabilities and sleep problems have symptoms similar to that of an ADHD person, making it challenging for a doctor to diagnose accurately. When a child exhibits signs of or identical to ADHD, it is crucial for people around them to be more understanding of them. Their behaviour mustn’t be taken as something they can control without help. Parents, doctors, teachers and therapists should cooperate for a faster and better recovery.

What are the possible causes of ADHD?

The causes of ADHD could be

1-Genes – ADHD and certain anxiety disorders run in families

2-Neurological problems – Chemicals or areas of the brain that control attention/organizing skills can be out of balance or less active

3-Health issues – Poor nutrition, infections, smoking, drinking and substance abuse during pregnancy can affect brain development.

4- Damage to the frontal lobe of the brain.

Line of Treatments

There are several approaches to treating ADHD. According to research, the best way is a multimodal approach involving multiple treatment methods that work together. For a more beneficial outcome, therapists, doctors, teachers and parents should work together.

Medication:

Stimulants are prescribed to treat ADHD that can help control hyperactive and impulsive behaviour and improve attention span. Adderall is one of the many medications available for the same. Adderall is a central nervous system stimulant that affects the chemicals in the brain that contribute to hyperactivity and impulse control.

Side effects from ADHD medications include-

1-Anxiety

2-Loss of appetite

3-Fatigue

4-Trouble sleeping

5-Upset stomach

6-Headache

Treatments other than medications that can help manage the symptoms of ADHD are-

1-Healthy eating habits like inculcating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains into your diet

2-Participating in daily physical activity based on your interests

3-Limiting the daily screen time from phones, computers, laptops and other electronic devices to avoid straining.

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