What is ADHD?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) affects both children and teens and continues till their adulthood. ADHD is one of the most common mental disorders which is diagnosed in a large number of people in this World. Such kind of behavior has a detrimental effect on both the school and home life of children and adults. It is diagnosed in the early years of children when they face problem in paying attention in their classes and doing homeworks. While the teenagers face difficulties in managing time and organizing the daily tasks of their routines. It also becomes problematic for them in holding on to a job or a relationship which also affects their self-esteem negatively. There are different symptoms present for this disorder which can help in understanding what ADHD is. For children the symptoms are: being distracted easily, not being able to listen carefully, not following directions, not paying attention and making mistakes carelessly, forgetting about the daily routine tasks, not being able to organize, not being able to sit still, losing things easily, daydreaming, talking excessively and many others. While for the adults the symptoms are: forgetfulness, low self-esteem, anxiety, problems at work, extremely aggressive, being impulsive, addictions, procrastination, chronic boredom, easily frustrated, trouble concentrating in listening and reading, mood swings, relationship problems and many more. For some people the ADHD gets better when they enter into adulthood but for most of the people it’s not easy to eradicate all the symptoms altogether due to which most of the people having ADHD end up living their whole lives like this.

How common is ADHD?

Different researches have used different techniques to find out that how common ADHD is. According to some reports, 5% to 8% school-age children tend to have this disorder. But it was also reported to be 11% later. Some researchers have truly relied on the statements of the parents of such children who say that their children is suffering from ADHD but that doesn’t necessarily mean that those children tend to have all the symptoms and conditions of this disorder. Some don’t even meet the criteria of the disorder but are reported to have ADHD anyhow. Such children can possibly have other mental or behavioral issues which have the same symptoms as ADHD. While on the other hand, most of the children who are actually suffering from this disorder are not able to be diagnosed or being reported as one of those who actually have it. As symptoms of other mental disorders overlap with the symptoms of ADHD, most of the researchers are not able to work perfectly by putting such children in the right categories. It is also considered to be a modern disease or disorder which doesn’t seem to be appeared in parents or grandparents. It is believed that it exists only in the young children and adults of this modern World. It is also reported that from 2003-2011 the number of such children have been increased to 42% than before. Researchers and parents want to know whether there is something in the air, water or the soil that causes the children to be suffered from ADHD or it is just because of the awareness and assessment tools which are present in the today world but were not present in that old time. So, it’s quite possible that people from the decades ago were also suffering from the same disorder but it went undiagnosed and untreated. Based on geography, the different rates are observed in different areas of the World. In states like Alabama, Ohio, Rhode Island, Kentucky and South Caroline, more than 13% children are reported to be diagnosed with the disorder while California, Nevada and Colorado have a rate of 7% or less. It can either because of the non-availability of the experts and required assessment tools or because of the hesitant parents who don’t want their children to be reported among those suffering from the disorder. There can be other cultural and economic factors as well. The other report suggests that boys are twice likely to have the disorder than the girls. 4% of the adults are also reported to have the disorder. 60% of the children end up facing the same issue in the adulthood while it doesn’t necessarily mean that 40% of the children get rid of this before reaching the adulthood. This statistics can also involve other factors and reasons.

What are the available treatment options for ADHD?

ADHD affects both behavior and brain so it can be treated the both way either by the use of medications or by the therapeutic treatments. For the therapeutic treatments, there are several options like psychotherapy, behavior therapy, social skills training, parenting skills training or the use of support groups.

How does the treatment work?

Psychotherapy can be really helpful in helping such people to be open up and notice their behavior pattern to be able to make good choices for the future regarding life goals or relationships. Behavioral therapy is also helpful in teaching children how they can monitor their behavior and create changes in it accordingly. It can help in developing strategies for certain responses according to the certain situations. Direct feedback or reward system can be really beneficial in supporting the positive attitude and behavior among such children. Social skills training can be useful for such people in dealing with social issues and social environments. This can really help children and adults to live and work with others by teaching them to respond properly when they are teased or to wait patiently for their turn without being aggressive. Such children are also encouraged to help and share things with others. Parenting skills training is to help parents in assessing the behavior of their children and managing it accordingly. Reward giving technique is used in this sort of training and parents are asked to immediately encourage their children for even the small positive attitudes. Sometimes taking timeout is also necessary for the parents in this way they can help their children to deal better with the situation when the next time they face it. Impactful exercises and relaxation techniques are also taught to such parents for them to apply it on their children. Support groups also help parents to connect or relate with others who are having the same experiences. It can be a source of great comfort as well that no one is alone in this and it also causes to bring out a lot of ideas and strategies to cope up with the situation. When it comes to medications there are numerous kinds of stimulant and non-stimulant medications which can be used to treat the clients of this disorder with the proper consultation. Adderall is a medicine which is a combination of amphetamine and dextroamphetamine. It helps the clients in controlling their activities and increasing the attention spans. Modafinil is the other medicine which is not stimulant-based which is why it is considered to be unique for the treatment of ADHD. The brain should be focused and attentive when this is being used. Strattera is a non-stimulant medicine which clearly stands out because it helps in increasing attention and controlling hyperactivity and impulsivity.

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