An Explanation of Attention Deficit (Hyperactivity) Disorder
Lately there has been news about whether ADD or ADHD is actually a fictitious disorder or real mental health problem. Plus many are confused as to whether it is called ADD or ADHD. It used to be called both, but now it is referred to as just ADHD. As for being real or not, what is real?
Whether it is or it isn’t doesn’t remove the fact that many people have problems with being able to focus, hold their concentration and show signs of restlessness and impulsiveness. So if it isn’t called that by name, I am sure it would be called something else.
The basic symptoms of ADD are inattentiveness and I’ll also say hyperactivity, as ADD is now also ADHD as I said before…the 2 are not classed as being different…and the symptoms are usually the same for both children and adults.
While we are more forgiving and patient with ADD in children, adults with the same disorder may have a much harder time fitting into society.
People ‘diagnosed’ with ADHD rarely think before doing or saying something. Do you exhibit symptoms?
They are impulsive, which is a behavioral problem that can definitely affect their relationships with other people, either professional or personal.
It is very typical for someone with adult attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity to be single or unattached. The main reason for this is because they are largely incapable of keeping long-term relationships with other people.
They may also have a hard time keeping a job because their employer or co-workers may tire of their poor work attitude, rudeness, procrastination or unreliability.
What many people don’t usually understand is that a person with ADHD or ADD doesn’t really mean to exhibit bad behavior. They are often very lonely and have low self-esteem. Serious cases may even have suicidal tendencies as it is tiring to them too.
- This is why it is very important to seek help if you notice anyone with these symptoms…whether it be a ‘real disease’ or not…the person needs help.
- They may also be suffering from depression and anxiety, which some people suffering from ADD or ADHD can develop.
They also have very little patience and have a tendency to interrupt conversations with other people whenever they have something so say. Obviously, they don’t mean to be rude but this kind of behavior can certainly get very annoying to other people who don’t realize that they have a problem.
Estimates are that ADHD occurs in 1 out of 7 American children. The average age of onset is age 7. It may continue through teen years and into adulthood. It has probably existed longer than most people think. A similar condition to ADHD has been described by Hippocrates (460 to 370 BC).
There are three subtypes as identified by NIMH of ADHD:
- Predominantly hyperactive-impulsive
Six or more symptoms fall into the hyperactivity-impulsivity category. There can be less than six symptoms of inattention. Some inattention may still be present.
Children with symptoms of hyperactivity may:
Be constantly moving, have trouble sitting still or doing quiet activities (squirming and fidgeting), run around grabbing/touching everything they see, talk nonstop.
- Predominantly inattentive
Six or more symptoms (a majority) are present in the inattention category. Less than six symptoms of hyperactivity-impulsivity are showing, though they may still be present. Kids in this subtype have less likelihood of having problems getting along with other kids, and have less likelihood of acting out. They may appear to be sitting quietly but are not focusing their attention on what they are supposed to be doing. These children may go unnoticed as having ADHD.
Children with symptoms of inattention may:
Be distracted easily, get bored easily, be forgetful, often lose things, lack focus and switch readily from one activity to another, tend to daydream, seem not to be listening when spoken to, confuse easily and have difficulty following directions.
- Combined hyperactive-impulsive and inattentive
These kids have six or more symptoms of inattention and also of hyperactivity-impulsivity. Most children fall into this subtype.
Children with symptoms of impulsivity may:
Show unrestrained emotions, impatience (including delaying gratification or waiting for their turn in a game), act out, interrupt, and make inappropriate comments.
The causes of ADHD are not known for sure, but studies suggest genetics may be involved to a large degree, as well as a combination of other factors, including nutrition, environmental and social factors, brain injuries, and potentially, food additives. The role of sugar as a factor is controversial and there seems to be more evidence discounting than supporting it.
- Genetic factors – International research on twins suggests that ADHD often runs in families.
- Environmental factors – Research indicates a potential link between children with ADHD and cigarette use and use of alcohol during pregnancy. Also, preschoolers may have a higher risk of developing ADHD if they have exposure to high levels of lead found in plumbing or in old buildings with lead paint.
- Brain injuries – Children who have had brain injury sometimes show certain behaviors that look similar to those of ADHD, but not many children with ADHD have had brain injuries.
Children normally have some occasions when they may be hyperactive, inattentive, or have impulsive responses, which are the three key hallmarks of ADHD.
However, children who have ADHD exhibit these behaviors more often and to a much greater degree. To make a diagnosis of ADHD in a child, that child must exhibit symptoms lasting six or more months and have a greater degree of intensity or duration of the behaviors than their peers.
Until a few years ago, ADHD was generally believed to have been a childhood disorder and that they would outgrow it as they reached adulthood. However, studies have shown that adult attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity is indeed possible. This is why treatments, whether it be natural ADD medications or traditional are always being researched.
There have been several traditional ADHD medications available in the market but these have normally been associated with treating child ADD. Although these drugs are recognized as being the common treatment, they do come with a major problem — the risk of drug dependency.
Treatment for ADHD focuses on reducing symptoms and enhancing function, and includes medication, psychotherapy, education, or a combination of these.
- Practically all the traditional medications for ADHD contain addictive substances.
I am not going to discuss these medications as I am all about the use of natural medicines and herbal remedies and would rather discuss how to treat ADHD symptoms naturally. So if you would like more information on these you will have to research them on the medical websites.
- If you want to stay away from medications, there are also other options you can take to treat child and adult attention deficit disorder, such as psychotherapy or behavior modification therapy.
- There are also natural ADD/ADHD remedies in the form of homeopathic medicines.
Regardless of what ADHD treatment you and your doctor decide on, the most important thing to remember is that there is a solution to manage the condition…be it real or not.
So if you want to stop the symptoms, with a natural health solution, you can discuss those options with your doctor too!
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