Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a neurodevelopmental and behavioral disorder. It is characterized by hyperactivity, inattention, and impulsive actions (when you act quickly with no thought to the consequences). People with ADHD find it hard to regulate their emotions and might cause problems in social settings. It might get worse if left untreated and often is associated with other mental disorders like anxiety disorder.
SYMPTOMS OF ADHD:
ADHD is divided into three major types, predominantly inattentive (ADHD – PI or ADHD – I), predominantly hyperactive – impulsive (ADHD – PH or ADHD – HI) and combined type (ADHD – C). The symptoms of ADHD differ according to each type.
Symptoms of predominantly inattentive ADHD (ADHD – PI or ADHD – I):
- Difficulty focusing on a single task at hand
- Refusal to engage in tasks requiring sustained attention
- Tends to not follow instructions
- Doesn’t maintain eye contact
- Frequently distracted by irrelevant things
- Making a lot of careless mistakes casually
- Struggling to organize tasks and meet deadlines
Symptoms of predominantly hyperactive – impulsive ADHD (ADHD – PH or ADHD – HI):
- Frequently running around
- Has trouble sitting still
- Difficulty in engaging in leisure activities or play
- Talks too much regularly
- Frequently interrupts others conversation
- Often seems to be in a state of motion
Symptoms of combined type ADHD (ADHD – C):
As the name says, the symptoms of this type are usually a combination of symptoms of predominantly inattentive (ADHD – PI or ADHD – I) and predominantly hyperactive-impulsive (ADHD – PH or ADHD – H).
Girls with ADHD display fewer hyperactivity symptoms but they tend to show more symptoms of inattention and distraction. ADHD often tends to affect one’s social skills. Emotional dysregulation is also a common symptom of ADHD. Poor handwriting, delays in speech, late language and motor development are also seen in children with ADHD. Children affected with ADHD, often get diagnosed with other disorders like OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder), ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder), ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder), anxiety disorders. ADHD is also associated with high levels of suicide risks.
CAUSES OF ADHD:
ADHD is often perceived as the result of neurological dysfunction associated with the production of dopamine and norepinephrine. There might also be a genetic and environmental cause for the occurrence of ADHD. Alcohol consumption during pregnancy, smoking, substance use by the mother can also induce ADHD symptoms. Premature birth, very low birth weight, social abuse, neglection can also be associated with a high risk for ADHD. In children with ADHD, it is observed that there is a greater decrease in the volume of the left side prefrontal cortex.
DIAGNOSIS OF ADHD:
ADHD is diagnosed by the assessment of a person’s behavior. The symptoms mentioned above can be checked in the subject. ADHD often takes some input from the subject’s parents and teachers. The subject should also be screened for anxiety, depression, ODD, CD, and learning and language disorders.
TREATMENT OF ADHD:
ADHD doesn’t have a specific cure, rather it has some techniques with helps the person with ADHD to manage their symptoms. The management of ADHD always involves medications, counseling, and in some cases, a combination of both.
Behavioral therapies include,
- Cognitive behavioral therapy
- Family therapy
- Group therapy
- Social skills training
- Behavior therapy
People with ADHD are often made to explore the things they are interested in so that they could spend all their energy and hyper-fixate on something that makes them happy and focused.
Medications used are often stimulants and anti-depressants. Regular monitoring is required in case of long-term medication as it might have some serious side effects.
Physical exercise can also be included as a part of the treatment as it might improve the cognition, coordination, and mental health of people with ADHD.  Reducing stress can overcome the disease. In recent times, one device used as an exercise to reduce stress is the fidget spinner. They say that it stimulates the nerves and relaxes the body. It is a great tool to reduce stress.
The art of medicine consists in amusing the patient while the nature cures the illness...
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