Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder
Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) is a chronic mental condition marked by inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsive behavior that can significantly affect an individual’s normal functioning. ADHD mostly affects children and teens but often lasts into adulthood. Children living with ADHD often have low self-esteem and have difficulties creating relationships at school and home.
Signs and symptoms of ADHD
Symptoms vary with each individual, but typical symptoms include inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsive behavior.
- Inattention means that the person experiences difficulties focusing, organizing their thoughts, and are easily distracted from an ongoing task. A person cannot correctly comprehend the happenings around them and often appears not to listen or follow instructions.
- Hyperactivity involves constant and inappropriate movements. It also manifests in excessive fidgets or taps using hands or fingers or squirming in the seat.
- Impulsivity is characterized by impulsive behaviors where the person makes hasty decisions without thinking about the consequences of their actions.
Despite ADHD being a common condition, the exact cause remains unknown to doctors and researchers. But extensive research over the years suggests it is a genetic condition transferred from parents to offspring through genes. Some researchers also argue that ADHD is a neurological condition associated with low dopamine levels, a chemical in the brain that transmits signals between nerves. Other researchers have linked the structural formation of the brain to ADHD. The brain of children with ADHD has been observed to have less gray matter volume, the part of the brain that regulates speech, muscle control, decision-making, and self-control. Some studies also suggest that exposure to toxins such as lead may interfere with a child’s brain development, causing ADHD.
Anyone is at risk of developing ADHD. However, studies have shown that children are more likely to develop ADHD than adults. Boys are also are 2 to 3 more times likely to develop ADHD than girls.
ADHD is often diagnosed in children below the age of 12. While there is no particular test to diagnose ADHD, symptoms begin to manifest when children start to show symptoms of hyperactivity and inattention. Your doctor will conduct a complete behavioral examination to diagnose ADHD.
Unfortunately, there is no cure for ADHD. However, the condition is manageable through medication and therapy. Stimulants such as Amphetamine, Dexmethylphenidate, and Dextroamphetamine are used to control the hyperactive and impulsive behavior and improve attention. Therapies such as psychotherapy and behavioral therapy focus on changing the behavior. However, the best treatment plan integrates both medications and therapy for the best results.