What is ADHD?

what is adhd

While people with ADHD can have success in school, work and relationships, they also often face challenges at home. They may have trouble keeping track of bills, appointments and deadlines. They might forget things easily or make impulsive decisions that affect others. These problems can strain even the most forgiving friends, colleagues and loved ones. If these problems persist, talk to your doctor. They can recommend treatments that can help.

What is adhd

ADHD, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, is a mental health condition that causes trouble with paying attention, staying organized and controlling impulses. It affects nearly four million adults in the United States and can have serious effects on job performance, relationships and self-esteem. It can also make it hard to get enough sleep, exercise and socialize.

If your child or teen has symptoms of ADHD, it’s important to see a doctor for an evaluation. Your doctor will want to rule out other reasons for the symptoms, such as learning disabilities or problems with reading, writing or motor skills. They will ask about your child’s behavior at home, in school and in other settings. They will want to know how the symptoms interfere with daily functioning and if they’ve been present for more than six months.

The types of treatment for ADHD depend on the type and severity of the symptoms. Behavior therapy, for example, involves teaching kids and parents skills that can help them manage their symptoms. These include establishing routines, setting goals and giving feedback on progress. Behavioral therapy can be combined with family counseling, which teaches parents how to support their children and provide them with encouragement and rewards.

Many adults with ADHD manage their symptoms through medications. Medicines can improve focus and organization and help reduce impulsive behaviors. These medications are not a cure for ADHD, but they can help many people live more productive and fulfilling lives.

Talking therapies, such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), can help people with ADHD change how they think about and handle their problems. These therapies can be carried out in one-to-one sessions or with a group. Some people with ADHD also find that a balanced diet, getting plenty of sleep and regular physical activity can improve their symptoms.

Some people with ADHD also have other mental illnesses, such as anxiety or depression. These conditions can cause problems with attention and can worsen the symptoms of ADHD. They can also make it harder to treat ADHD.

Scientists don’t know what causes ADHD, but they do know that genes play a role. They also know that environmental factors — such as poor nutrition, lead exposure and smoking during pregnancy — can have an impact on whether a child develops the condition. It’s important for families to learn all they can about the condition and how to recognize and address it. Getting diagnosed and treated early can improve the quality of life for both children and adults with ADHD.

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