Health & Diet

ADHD: Symptoms And Treatment

Frustrated ChildPhoto by amenclinics_photos

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is a condition which mostly affects person’s behavior. It is often diagnosed in children, but it can affect adults, too.

There may be problems with child’s social, intellectual and psychological development as a result of the behavior. The diagnosis can be done after a detailed assessment. Diet may be a factor which causes this condition and may be worth considering, although treatment usually includes parent-training programs and sometimes medication.

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  • Make sense of your child’s symptoms
  • Get an accurate diagnosis
  • Work with school and health care professionals to get needed support
  • Learn parenting techniques that promote better behavior
  • Strengthen your child’s academic and social skills
ADHD

Read more about Taking Charge of ADHD, Third Edition: The Complete, Authoritative Guide for Parents

Causes

The cause of this condition is not known. Experts think that there may be subtle changes in parts of the brain which controls concentration and impulses. Even though the main cause is not known, many factors are thought to increase the risk of a child developing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. These include: Severe deprivation, obstetric problems, antenatal problems, and genetics. Factors in a child’s upbringing, such as family stress, poor parenting, watching a lot of TV, etc., do not cause this condition. However, these factors may make the behavior of a child with this condition worse.

Symptoms

ADHD has been called attention-deficit disorder and hyperactivity. However, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder is the preferred term because it includes the two main aspects of the condition: hyperactive-impulsive behavior and inattention. Symptoms of this condition may include impulsivity, restlessness, trouble concentrating or focusing, hot temper, trouble coping with stress, unstable relationships, frequent mood swings, low frustration tolerance, disorganization, and difficulty completing tasks.

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Treatment

Current treatments usually involve psychological counseling, medication or both. The most effective treatment is often a combination of medication and therapy. Stimulants are the most commonly prescribed medications for this condition, but other drugs may be prescribed, too. Stimulants appear to boost and balance levels of neurotransmitters. These medications help treat the symptoms of hyperactivity and inattention. Other medications used to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder include antidepressants and atomoxetine.

They work slower compared to stimulants and may take a few weeks before they take full effect. It may take some time in the beginning to find what is right for you, because the right medication and the right dose vary between individuals. Talk to your doctor about the risks and benefits of medications and also keep your doctor informed of any side effects which may occur when you take your medications. Counseling can be beneficial and normally includes psychological counseling and education about the disorder.

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It may help you to learn how to reduce your impulsive behavior, cope with past social and academic failures, develop better problem-solving skills, improve your organizational skills and time management, develop strategies for controlling your temper, learn ways to improve relationships with your friends, co-workers and family, and improve your self- esteem. Common types of psychotherapy are marital counseling and family therapy and cognitive behavioral therapy.

The first type of therapy can help your family and loved ones to cope with the stress of living with a person who has this condition and learn why they can do in order to help. Such counseling can improve problem-solving and communication skills. The second type of therapy is structured type of counseling which teaches specific skills in order to manage your behavior and change negative thinking patterns into positive ones. Cognitive behavioral therapy can help you deal with life challenges, such as relationship or work problems, school, and help address other metal health conditions, such as substance abuse or depression.

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