Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by persistent patterns of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity that interfere with daily functioning or development. ADHD often begins in childhood and can continue into adolescence and adulthood. Here are key points about ADHD:

1. Subtypes:

  • Predominantly Inattentive Presentation: Characterized by difficulties sustaining attention, organizing tasks, and completing activities.
  • Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation: Involves hyperactivity and impulsivity without significant inattention.
  • Combined Presentation: Features both inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive symptoms.

2. Symptoms:

  • Inattention: Forgetfulness, easily distracted, difficulty organizing tasks, frequent careless mistakes, trouble following instructions.
  • Hyperactivity: Excessive fidgeting, restlessness, difficulty staying seated, running or climbing in inappropriate situations.
  • Impulsivity: Acting without thinking, interrupting others, difficulty waiting one’s turn, making hasty decisions.

3. Diagnosis:

  • Diagnosis is typically based on specific criteria outlined in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).
  • The assessment involves gathering information from multiple sources, including parents, teachers, and observations.

4. Onset and Duration:

  • Symptoms usually appear before the age of 12, and the diagnosis requires evidence of impairment in multiple settings.
  • While symptoms may change over time, ADHD is considered a chronic condition.

5. Causes:

  • The exact cause of ADHD is not fully understood, but genetic, neurological, and environmental factors likely contribute.
  • Prenatal factors (such as exposure to substances), premature birth, and early exposure to lead are potential risk factors.

6. Co-Existing Conditions:

  • ADHD often coexists with other conditions, such as learning disabilities, anxiety disorders, and mood disorders.
  • It can impact academic performance, occupational functioning, and interpersonal relationships.

7. Treatment:

  • Behavioral Therapy: Teaches coping strategies, organizational skills, and self-regulation techniques.
  • Medication: Stimulant medications (e.g., methylphenidate, amphetamines) and non-stimulant medications (e.g., atomoxetine) may be prescribed, depending on individual needs.

8. Challenges and Strengths:

  • Individuals with ADHD may face challenges in areas such as time management, impulse control, and sustained attention.
  • Some individuals with ADHD also possess strengths, such as creativity, energy, and the ability to hyperfocus on areas of interest.

9. Lifelong Impact:

  • While symptoms may change over time, ADHD can have a lifelong impact on various aspects of an individual’s life.
  • With appropriate support and interventions, individuals with ADHD can lead successful and fulfilling lives.

10. Parent and Teacher Involvement: – Collaboration between parents, teachers, and healthcare professionals is often crucial in managing ADHD symptoms in different settings.

11. Adult ADHD: – ADHD often continues into adulthood, and symptoms may manifest differently in adults. – Adult ADHD can affect work performance, relationships, and overall quality of life.