Any child may show inattention, distractibility, impulsivity, or hyperactivity at times,
but the child with ADHD shows these symptoms and behaviors more frequently and
severely than other children of the same age or developmental level. ADHD occurs
in 3-5% of school age children. ADHD typically begin in childhood but can continue
into adulthood. ADHD runs in families with about 25% of biological parents also
having this medical condition.
A child with ADHD often shows some of the following:
● trouble paying attention
● inattention to details and makes careless mistakes
● easily distracted
● loses school supplies, forgets to turn in homework
● trouble finishing class work and homework
● trouble listening
● trouble following multiple adult commands
● blurts out answers
● fidgets or squirms
● leaves seat and runs about or climbs excessively
● seems "on the go"
● talks too much and has difficulty playing quietly
● interrupts or intrudes on others
There are three types of ADHD. Some people have only difficulty with attention and
organization. This is also sometimes called Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). This is
ADHD inattentive subtype. Other people have only the hyperactive and impulsive
symptoms. This is ADHD-hyperactive subtype. The Third, and most commonly
identified group consists of those people who have difficulties with attention and
hyperactivity, or the combined type.
A child presenting with ADHD symptoms should have a comprehensive evaluation.
Parents should ask their pediatrician or family physician to refer them to a child and
adolescent psychiatrist, who can diagnose and treat this medical condition. A child
with ADHD may also have other psychiatric disorders such as conduct disorder,
anxiety disorder, depressive disorder, or bipolar disorder. These children may also
have learning disabilities.
Without proper treatment, the child may fall behind in schoolwork, and friendships
may suffer. The child experiences more failure than success and is criticized by
teachers and family who do not recognize a health problem