Summary: What is ADHD? What are some of the medical treatments? What are the recent trends? What are some of the symptoms associated with it?ADHD

What is ADHD?

ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

Recent studies/trends

  • Recent studies indicate an increase of close to 25% in the number of cases diagnosed since 2001.
  • Significant increases for whites, blacks, and Hispanics
  • Not as significant increases for Asians and Pacific Islanders
  • More likely from income families earning $70,000 or more
  • More prevalent in males than females
  • Medication can slow growth in teenage boys – tend to be shorter and slimmer – prolonged treatment of 3 + years.
  • One of the most common chronic childhood diseases
  • No official tool for diagnosing
  • Children have a tendency to earn less, and work less later in life
  • Symptoms can be similar to other mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety disorders
  • May be linked to organizational deficits and motor coordination problems

Symptoms in children:

  • Inattention such as easily distracted, forgetful when performing daily activities, and not following directions
  • Hyperactivity such as squirming, fidgeting, talking excessively or always moving
  • Impulsiveness such as difficulty waiting for his or her turn, responding to questions before being fully asked or interrupting often

Probable causes:

  • Heredity/genetics
  • Chemical imbalances
  • Brain changes
  • Poor nutrition
  • Substance abuse
  • Brain injury
  • Exposure to toxins

Treatment options:

  • Medication such as Concerta, Vyvanse, and Ritalin
  • Psychosocial therapies such as behavior modification, counseling, social skills training, special education and support groups

Side effects of drugs:

  • Appetite loss
  • Sleep problems
  • Stomach aches

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