Attention Deficit Disorder
Last modified: October 14, 2017
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are terms used to describe behaviour patterns that are most often observed in young children of the school-going age. These disorders are characterised by behaviours such as: inattentiveness, excessive impulsiveness and hyperactivity.
The children affected with these disorders are not able to sit still for long, or focus on the work that they have to do for even a little while. Attention Deficit Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder both hamper the learning process because of the poor attention span of the child although they are not learning disorders. Even children with high IQ may do poorly in their studies if they are affected by ADD or ADHD.
There are no single factors that could cause ADD and ADHD. Researchers believe that they could be caused by a combination of factors that maybe hereditary, environmental, nutrition based or even social impacts. Brain injuries are also suspected to be one of the causes.
Children with ADD and ADHD may also exhibit some of the following emotional responses:
aggressive or violent behaviour
withdrawal, anxiety and depression
physical symptoms – like headaches, stomach aches, back aches, or pains in the hands or legs.
ADD and ADHD are difficult to diagnose because the social behaviour of the child is more apparent than the underlying and masked attention problems. It is often observed that the class clown or the class bully or the children unwilling to participate in anything for fear of failure are usually affected by ADD or ADHD.
Treatments for ADD and ADHD could include medication, various types of psychotherapy, education or training, or a combination of these treatments.
Medications prescribed for ADD and ADHD are usually stimulants but they are observed to have a calming effect on the children with these problems. These medications may be in the form of pills, capsules, liquids, or skin patches. They may vary in their dosages and action time such as: short-acting, long-acting, or extended release types. Medications improves the physical co-ordination, the attention span and their ability to learn and work with attention by reducing the hyperactivity and impulsiveness.
Psychotherapy like Behavioural Therapy is used for treating children with ADD and ADHD to bring about behavioural change in them such as: task management in and out of school, emotional management during stressful times, self-monitoring and self-control and reacting proactively to situations, as well as social skills in caring, sharing and responding to other’s comments.
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