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Attention Deficit Disorder
There are two main labels commonly used, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and attention deficit disorder (ADD). Some children are diagnosed with ADHD and others ADD and in some cases children can have both ADHD and ADD. A child who presents as challenging, impulsive and who fidgets excessively tend to fall within the ADHD category whereas a child diagnosed with ADD may be quiet, daydream a lot, and less challenging. The important thing to remember is that no two children are alike and symptoms can vary within and between different children. It is currently estimated that between 3-5% of children within the world have the disorder. The case numbers may have risen due to the fact that we understand the disorder and its subsequent impact on children and their educational attainment; hence we are more pro-active with testing and diagnosis.
• Can be inattentive
• Making careless mistakes
• Have difficulty following instructions
• Fail to complete work
• Frequently misplacing things
• Have difficulty staying organised
• Interrupting others
• Inability to stay put
• Fidgeting/ squirming/ tapping fingers or foot
• Can be more prone to emotional outbursts and temper tantrums
Attention deficit disorder is a genetic biological predisposition which tends to run in families. When tracing family histories of children with ADHD/ADD, families can often identify other relatives who were always getting into trouble at school or who quit school at an early age who may have been living with undiagnosed ADHD. However without professional assessment and diagnosis it can be difficult to differentiate between wilful child/adolescent negative behaviour and a genetic attention deficit disorder. ADHD/ADD is a pervasive disorder which means children have the disorder for life. As children mature, the symptom severity may appear less pronounced. This may be due to maturity and hormonal stability but can also be the result of children/adults learning to adapt to their environment and having developed active coping strategies.
It can be very upsetting and frustrating for children with ADHD/ADD who get into a lot of trouble for; misbehaviour, struggling in school, who can appear troublesome, disorganised and not able to follow instructions when biologically, it is a struggle . As with all children, children with ADHD/ADD require love and support. Early support and intervention can make a difference which means that children can succeed within school and within business. Rather than think of ADHD/ADD as a disorder, perhaps we should think of it as a difference.
Successful individuals identified within the media as having ADHD/ADD
Attention Deficit Disorder Association
The national Attention Deficit Disorder Information Service:
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