ADHD is a behavioral disorder that affects children and adolescents. It is characterized by impulsivity and hyperactivity. Symptoms may be present at an early age or persist into adulthood.
The underlying cause of ADHD is unknown, but scientists believe it has to do with differences in the way two different brain networks work. These networks control attention, and the difference in how they work can lead to symptoms of ADHD.
Medications are often used to treat ADHD. The first step is to identify the type of ADHD a child has and then find a doctor who is trained in diagnosing and treating it. The doctor will conduct a physical examination and do tests to determine if there are any other problems that could be causing the symptoms of ADHD, such as poor vision or hearing.
Treatment strategies can include medication, behavioral therapy and school supports. Parents can receive training in behavior management to help their children deal with the behaviors that cause problems.
Some parents choose to try a form of psychotherapy, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). CBT helps the person with ADHD learn new ways to manage their behaviors and interact with others in a more effective way. This can help a person who struggles with ADHD get control of their behavior and avoid or reduce irritability, aggression and other symptoms that may make it difficult to maintain positive relationships.
Social skills training can also be helpful, particularly if the person with ADHD has trouble communicating in social situations. This can be especially important in high-schoolers and college students, as they must work with their peers to develop friendships and study habits.
It is important for a person with ADHD to avoid using drugs and alcohol, as these substances interfere with the frontal lobe of the brain, which controls impulses and emotions. In addition, the use of these substances causes changes in the way dopamine, a neurotransmitter, is made and released by the brain.
In addition, dopamine deficiency can cause problems with balance and coordination. This can impact a child’s ability to walk, talk and perform tasks such as writing or using the computer.
The best way to prevent the negative effects of ADHD is to teach a child with ADHD how to be more focused on their goals and avoid distractions. This can be done by encouraging them to take a break from their projects or assignments when they feel they are losing focus or completing a task too slowly.
They can also be encouraged to set and stick to a schedule. A good way to do this is to keep a schedule on the refrigerator or bulletin board that they can check every day for any changes.
A routine and schedule can make it easier to stay organized and keep track of homework, chores or other responsibilities that require continuous mental effort. A schedule can also remind children when to complete projects or assignments so they don’t lose focus on the project.