What is adhd
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common mental health condition that causes problems with concentration, impulse control and social skills. It affects people of all ages and is often associated with other conditions, such as depression and anxiety.
ADHD is caused by a combination of factors, including genetics and heredity. It is also linked to environmental and developmental factors, such as low birth weight, premature birth, early exposure to toxins, or stressful situations during pregnancy.
What is the diagnostic standard for diagnosing ADHD?
Healthcare providers use the criteria in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fifth edition (DSM-5). These guidelines ensure that people are appropriately diagnosed and treated.
Inattention: Fails to pay close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, at work or with other activities. This may include concentrating on one task too long, or forgetting to do homework or take a medication.
Forgetfulness: Sometimes people with ADHD forget things that others can remember easily, such as important birthdays or a list of items to be taken out of the trash. They may forget to pick up their children from school or hand in assignments on time.
Impulsivity: People with this symptom have a hard time waiting their turn or taking turns in games and activities. They may blurt out answers to questions or inappropriate comments or act out without thinking.
This symptom can lead to trouble with friends or family members, as well as being disruptive in classrooms and work settings. It may also lead to difficulty managing money, including impulsive spending or forgetting to pay bills on time.
Medication: Many people with ADHD are helped by medications that lessen symptoms of inattention or hyperactivity and impulsivity. These medications may be either stimulant or nonstimulant.
Behavioral therapies: Psychotherapy, education and training are also effective for treating some adults with ADHD. These therapies help people learn new ways to manage their symptoms and increase their ability to function at work and in school.
Counseling and social support: Having a strong relationship with parents and friends can help people with ADHD cope with their symptoms. These relationships can improve their self-esteem and reduce their stress levels.
Other treatments: Treatments for other conditions, such as depression and anxiety, can also be helpful for people with ADHD. These treatments may involve cognitive behavior therapy, medication, and psychotherapy.
What is the best way to talk about your child’s ADHD?
Having an open discussion about your child’s behaviors is the first step in getting the right diagnosis. You and your child can then start exploring the options available for treatment.
Your child’s doctor is the best person to make a diagnosis, and they will do a full exam to check for other medical conditions that can cause similar symptoms. You can then discuss the results with your doctor, who will recommend a treatment plan that is right for you and your child.
You can help your child or teen understand that ADHD is a disorder and not their fault. Explain that the behaviors are a normal part of growing up, and teach them to find other solutions when they feel overwhelmed.