Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common childhood disorders and it can continue through adolescence and adulthood. Symptoms include difficulty staying focused and paying attention, difficulty controlling behaviour and impulsivity, and hyperactivity (over-activity). Psychiatrists say ADHD is a neurobehavioral developmental disorder.
The behaviours that are common with ADHD interfere with a child’s ability to function at school and at home.
Symptoms of ADHD in children are generally grouped into three categories:
The person finds it hard to keep still – they fidget and talk a lot. A smaller child may be continually jumping, running or climbing. They are restless and impulsive – interrupting others, grabbing things and speaking at inappropriate times. They have difficulty waiting their turn and find it hard to listen to directions. A person with this type of ADHD will have more injuries and/or accidents than others. Here are common symptoms:
The child finds it very difficult to organize or finish a task. They find it hard to pay attention to details and find it difficult to follow instructions or conversations .Children with this subtype are less likely to act out or have difficulties getting along with other children. They may sit quietly, but they are not paying attention to what they are doing. Therefore, the child may be overlooked, and parents and teachers may not notice that he or she has ADHD.
A child whose symptoms include all those of 1 and 2, and whose symptoms are equally predominant. In other words, all the symptoms in 1 and 2 stand out equally. Most children have the combined type of ADHD.
Currently available treatments focus on reducing the symptoms of ADHD and improving functioning. Treatments include medication, various types of psychotherapy, parent training sessions, or a combination of treatments.
Current medications such as Concerta (methylphenidate), Strattera (Atomoxetine HCl), and Clonidine do not cure ADHD. Rather, they control the symptoms for as long as they are taken. Medications can help a child pay attention and complete schoolwork. Medications are prescribed by a Child Psychiatrist who will previously assess and rule out ADHD, prior the commencing treatment.
We do not take the prescription of medication lightly. Please read more about how our Psychiatrist prescribes medicine here.
Different types of psychotherapy are used for ADHD.