National ADHD Awareness Month

October is National ADHD Awareness Month

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD) is the most common neuro-developmental disorder in the world and is a highly genetic, brain-based syndrome. Children with ADHD may have trouble paying attention, controlling impulsive behaviors, or being overly active. Keep reading to learn more about signs, causes, types, and treatment options.

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Signs & Symptoms

It is normal for children to have trouble focusing and to behave out of control occasionally. However, children with ADHD do not grow out of these behaviors. The symptoms continue and can cause difficulty at school, at home, or with friends. A child with ADHD might:

  • Daydream often
  • Appear forgetful or lose things
  • Be unable to sit still
  • Fidget often
  • Talk excessively
  • Make careless mistakes
  • Have a hard time resisting temptation
  • Have trouble taking turns
  • Have difficulty getting along with others
  • Have little or no sense of danger
  • Constantly changing tasks or activities

6 million children between the ages of 3-17 have been diagnosed with ADHD

Boys (13%) are more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than girls (6%)

62% of children diagnosed with ADHD are taking ADHD medication

*Sources about ADHD from the CDC

Risk Factors for ADHD

Research shows that genetics plays an important role in the development of ADHD. Some other possible risk factors for ADHD include:

  • Brain injury
  • Exposure to environmental risk during pregnancy or at a young age
  • Alcohol and tobacco use during pregnancy
  • Premature delivery
  • Low birth weight

Types

Type 1

Predominantly Inattentive Presentation

This type presents itself as:
-Finding organizing or finishing a task difficult
-An inability to pay attention to detail or follow instructions
-Easily forgetting details of daily routine

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Type 2

Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation

This type presents itself as:
-Fidgeting a lot
-Having a hard time sitting still for a long time
-Feeling restless and impulsive
-Speaking at inappropriate times

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type 3

Combined Presentation

This type presents itself as:
-A mixture of symptoms of the first two types

Note: Keep in mind symptoms can change over time, as well as how they present themselves

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How To Get Diagnosed

There is no single test to diagnose ADHD. One step of the process may involve hearing and vision tests to rule out other potential diagnoses. Another step of the process often involves exploring the history of the child from parents, teachers, and sometimes the child themselves. Click here to learn more.

Treatment Of ADHD

option 1

Behavior Therapy

The goal of behavior therapy is to learn or strengthen positive behaviors and eliminate unwanted behaviors. It is best to start therapy as soon as a diagnosis is made.

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option 2

Medications

Medication can help manage ADHD symptoms and control unwanted behaviors. There are several different types of medications that are often prescribed.

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Option 3

Education and Support

As a parent, it’s important to learn more information and seek advice on how to help your child after getting an ADHD diagnosis.

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Managing Symptoms

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Develop Healthy Eating Habits

Eat plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean protein. Learn more for daily intake amount.

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Participate in Daily Physical Activity

Kids who are physically active tend to have better grades, cognitive performance, and classroom behavior. Learn more for recommendations.

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Limit Amount of Screen Time

Time in front of a screen is time kids are not active. Click for tips on how to reduce screen time.

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Get Recommended Amount of Sleep

How much sleep you need changes as you age. Learn how much sleep you and your kids should be getting.

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