Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
- Blood relatives, such as a parent or sibling, with ADHD or another mental health disorder
- Neural- Dopamine and Noradrenaline are increased
- Environmental -prenatal exposure to a variety of substances including nicotine, alcohol, prescription medications, and illicit substances.
- Environmental exposure to lead, organophosphate pesticides
- Minimal brain damage
- Premature birth
- Does not give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes
- Has difficulty sustaining attention on tasks or play activities
- Does not seem to listen when directly spoken to
- Does not follow through on instructions and does not finish schoolwork, chores, or duties in the workplace Has trouble organizing tasks or activities
- Avoids, dislikes, or is reluctant to do tasks that need sustained mental effort
- Loses things needed for tasks or activities
- Easily distracted
- Forgetful in daily activities
Hypreactivity/ Impulsive symptoms
- Fidgets with or taps hands or feet, or squirms in seat
- Leaves seat in situations when staying seated is expected
- Runs about or climbs when not appropriate (may present as feelings of restlessness in adolescents or adults)
- Unable to play or undertake leisure activities quietly
- “On the go,” acting as if “driven by a motor”
- Talks excessively Blurts out answers before a question has been finished
- Has difficulty waiting his or her turn Interrupts or intrudes on others
Children with ADHD
- Often struggle in the classroom, which can lead to academic failure and judgment by other children and adults
- Tend to have more accidents and injuries of all kinds than do children who don’t have ADHD
- Tend to have poor self-esteem
- Are more likely to have trouble interacting with and being accepted by peers and adults
- Are at increased risk of alcohol and drug abuse and other delinquent behavior
ADHD doesn’t cause other psychological or developmental problems. However, children with ADHD are more likely than others to also have conditions such as:
- Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), generally defined as a pattern of negative, defiant and hostile behavior toward authority figures
- Conduct disorder, marked by antisocial behavior such as stealing, fighting, destroying property, and harming people or animals
- Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder, characterized by irritability and problems tolerating frustration
- Learning disabilities, including problems with reading, writing, understanding and communicating
- Substance use disorders, including drugs, alcohol and smoking
- Anxiety disorders, which may cause overwhelming worry and nervousness, and include obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Mood disorders, including depression and bipolar disorder, which includes depression as well as manic behavior
- Autism spectrum disorder, a condition related to brain development that impacts how a person perceives and socializes with others
- Tic disorder or Tourette syndrome, disorders that involve repetitive movements or unwanted sounds (tics) that can’t be easily controlled
To help reduce your child’s risk of ADHD:
- During pregnancy, avoid anything that could harm fetal development. For example, don’t drink alcohol, use recreational drugs or smoke cigarettes.
- Protect your child from exposure to pollutants and toxins, including cigarette smoke and lead paint.
- Limit screen time. Although still unproved, it may be prudent for children to avoid excessive exposure to TV and video games in the first five years of life.
ADHD is diagnosed clinically by history. The reports of parents, teachers, and others, including teenage self-report, are core to its diagnosis.
Psychotherapy-Behaviour modiﬁcation and counselling are very important in the successful management of ADHD and can be used along with drug therapy.