A discussion of ADHD symptoms is complex since not all individuals exhibit the same symptoms, in the same ways, with the same severity, and at the same times in their lives.
As well, any discussion of a mental disorder in children must acknowledge the greater difficulty in diagnosing children who exhibit multiple, complex, overlapping, symptomatic clues.
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) is characterized as a general poor attention span and impulsive, inappropriate behavior in children.
Boys are much more likely to be diagnosed than girls. Overall, it has been estimated that up to 10% of all children may be affected.
The symptoms of the disorder are typically detected before the age of 4 years, but maybe as late as 7 years of age.
- speaking impulsively
- easily forgetting
- impulsive behavior
- problems communicating
- generally poor behavior
- lack of sustained attention
- lack of sustained concentration
- inability to finish tasks
- messy, incomplete schoolwork
- failure to complete home chores
- frequent switching between multiple incomplete tasks/chores
- throwing temper tantrums
- low self-esteem
- opposition to authority
- easily frustrated
Diagnosis typically follows deficits in academic and social performance and is based on the frequency, severity, and number of symptoms detected. Further, symptoms must also occur in separate environments (school and home) to suggest ADHD.
Treatment is commonly with drugs, and also behavioral therapy and education of both the child and the parent(s) (guardian).