Understanding Childhood ADHD: Symptoms, Diagnosis, and Treatment

Understanding Childhood

and Health

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a mental health condition that affects both children and adults. It is characterized by hyperactivity, impulsivity, and difficulty focusing and following through with tasks. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ADHD affects approximately 11 percent of children aged 4-17 in United States.

Signs and Symptoms of ADHD

Children with ADHD typically display signs of hyperactivity, impulsive behavior, and difficulty paying attention. Common signs include: difficulty staying seated, inability to focus on one task, forgetfulness, excessive talking, fidgeting, and interrupting conversations.

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Diagnosing ADHD

Diagnosis of childhood ADHD is based on a comprehensive assessment of a child’s behavior and academic performance. This assessment includes age-appropriate mental health and behavioral assessments, interviews with family and teachers, and a physical and neurological exam.

Treatments for Childhood ADHD

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends seeking treatment for all children diagnosed with ADHD, including both medications and behavioral therapy. Treatment for childhood ADHD will vary based on the child’s needs and, in some cases, can include medication, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and lifestyle changes. The AAP recommends that the treatment plan should be tailored to the individual child and take into consideration the family’s needs, resources, and preferences.

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Health Complications of ADHD

Research has shown that children with ADHD often have a greater risk of developing other mental health disorders such as anxiety and depression. They are also more likely to have impaired academic performance, higher rates of substance abuse, and higher rates of being involved in risky activities and behaviors.

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If your child has been diagnosed with ADHD, it is important to seek professional support and to monitor your child for signs of additional mental health problems or any health complications. Working with a mental health professional, can help your child manage their symptoms and lead a happy, healthy, and successful life.

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