Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD)
People with Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) may have trouble paying attention, controlling impulsive behaviors, or be overly active. The symptoms differ from person to person. While both children and adults can have ADHD, the symptoms almost always begin in children. In fact, it is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders of childhood.
A child or adult with Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder will show varying degrees of three behaviors, usually for at least 6 months and demonstrated in more than one setting:
Individuals who are inattentive, or easily distracted, have difficulty focusing on tasks. They can’t finish homework or meet work deadlines. They often struggle to follow though on projects, assignments and chores. They are often easily distracted, have difficulty staying organized and miss deadlines. They often fail to respond when being spoken to and are challenged in keeping track of important items such as keys, cell phones, homework or work papers.
Individuals who are impulsive act too quickly before thinking. They often act or express their feelings before considering the potential consequences. They often interrupt, and find it hard to wait. They may do things without asking for permission, take things that aren’t theirs, or act in ways that are risky. They may have emotional reactions that seem too intense for a normal situation.
Individuals who are hyperactive are fidgety, restless, and easily bored. They may have trouble sitting still, or staying quiet when needed. They may rush through things and make careless mistakes. Children with this condition may climb, jump, or roughhouse when they shouldn’t. Without meaning to, they may act in ways that disrupt others.
An estimated 8.4 percent of children and 2.5 percent of adults have ADHD. However, many ADHD symptoms, such as high activity levels, difficulty remaining still for long periods of time and limited attention spans, are common to young children in general.
The difference in children with ADHD is that their hyperactivity and inattention are noticeably greater than expected for their age and cause distress and/or problems functioning at home, at school or with friends. For adults, when these symptoms affect relationships at home, school or work, it becomes a disorder the should be addressed.
There is no single test to diagnose ADHD, and many other problems, like anxiety, depression, sleep problems, and certain types of learning disabilities, can have similar symptoms. This process will normally include:
- A diagnostic interview to develop a detailed history of past and current behavior patterns.
- A review of family medical history and a physical examination to rule out other medical conditions that can cause symptoms that resemble ADHD.
- Additional psychological tests to confirm or rule out other co-existing conditions.
If You Believe You or a Loved One May Have ADHD
If you believe that you or a loved one may have Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder or others have suggested that it might be an issue, don’t put off finding out as it can be successfully treated. Contact the Yang Institute to start your or your loved one’s journey to recovery.