Diagnosing ADHD involves knowing about the condition and what to look for. We will give you here relevant information on Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder to help you diagnose ADHD. Of course nothing replaces the expertise of an health professional familiar with ADHD but the aim of this article is to present the common symptoms to help in diagnosing ADHD.
Diagnosing ADHD in children: Know about the condition
ADHD is a neurological disorder affecting between three to eight percent of children in the United States. Like its name suggests signs of ADHD include inattention, hyperactivity but also impulsivity. Granted these are traits that most children have to varying degrees but these two types of behaviors are much more pronounced in a child with ADHD. Diagnosing ADHD in a child means these symptoms must be present all the time and everywhere, not just when the child is at school for example. There are varying degrees of ADHD ranging from mild to extremely severe. In the most serious cases the life of the person with ADHD is seriously affected, to the point where it is very hard for them to function normally in society.
Diagnosing ADHD, and then?
Diagnosing ADHD must be done by a professional. It is done by collecting information by a wide range of sources in contact with the kid like parents of course but also school teacher, relatives, etc. With all this information and after talking with the child, the doctor (pediatrician) will be help to establish a diagnosis regarding your child. Despite what some bad souls will say, ADHD is not a result of bad parenting. It has been proven so in many scientific studies. Rather ADHD is a genetic disease, meaning the chance of having a kid with ADHD is higher in families with an history of ADHD.
ADHD treatment is two pronged: the condition has to be treated both by medication and by therapy. Drugs will help the person concentrate and focus. There shouldn't be medication without behavioral therapy. Both are essential for getting ADHD under control. Footnote here, if ADHD is light it might not be necessary to resort to drugs, see with your doctor if drugs should be taken in your particular case.
Unfortunately, there is no real cure for ADHD, children will often grow to be adults with ADHD. But with therapy and medication, they will gradually learn how to control their impulses and how to better live with their condition. In no way should ADHD be seen as black mark against your child's future. Plenty of people with attention deficit disorder leave normal, successful lives. The best treatment for ADHD in a child is understanding, a well defined set of rules and encouragement. One last word, diagnosing ADHD early is preferable (that said don't bring your child for evaluation if he is too young, around 6 years old is a good age) to limit its effect on the social life of your child.