Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder
Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD or ADD) is kind of a brain problem. It affects how people think and act. People with ADHD usually have problems with focusing and remembering what is important. They may also have extra trouble sitting still or being quiet.
An easy (though not completely correct) way to imagine what ADHD is like is to think of a shiny light or a constant noise in a room. Imagine that you want to be able to turn your attention away to focus on other things, like getting the mess cleaned up, or doing your homework, but that shiny light or that buzzing sound is constantly distracting you. This is similar to why people with ADHD have trouble focusing. They want to focus, but they are constantly being distracted by a shiny thought in their head. Sometimes, that shiny thought gets stuck, and the person with ADHD will stop paying attention to anything else. This is called hyperfocus.
Experts think that throughout the entire world, about one in twenty children (5%) has ADHD. Some countries have more ADHD than others, and not everyone uses the same tests. Psychologists have found more people with ADHD in North America than in Africa and the Middle East. In the United States, about one in every fourteen children has ADHD (7%), including one in every ten boys (10%) and one in every twenty-five girls (4%). This could be because more boys get ADHD, or because fewer girls take ADHD tests.
ADHD is most common in children, but many adults have ADHD, too. A little less than half of children with ADHD get better when they become adults.
Most people who have ADHD also have other mental disorders, most often oppositional defiant disorder, conduct disorder, dyslexia, Tourette syndrome, anxiety disorders (especially obsessive-compulsive disorder), mood disorders, substance use disorders, eating disorders and personality disorders (especially antisocial, borderline, histrionic, passive-aggressive and avoidant).
Signs and symptoms[change | edit source]
- They can get distracted easily when listening
- They can have difficulty when focusing
- They can get bored after a few minutes unless it's something they enjoy
- They can have difficulty when organizing or completing a task, homework, assignments, and by handing in tasks
- They can often lose items or forget about them
- They do not seem to listen when they are spoken to
- They can daydream, become confused easily, and not move fast
- They have difficulty taking information quickly or correctly
- They seem to struggle when following instructions
Further reading[change | edit source]
- Genetics links between five major psychiatric disorders: autism, ADHD, bipolar disorder, depression, and schizophrenia per recent study.doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(08)61345-8
- 5 Disorders Share Genetic Risk Factors, Study Finds February 28, 2013 The New York Times
- Psychiatric Disorders Linked Genetically February 27, 2013 WSJ
References[change | edit source]
- LONI: Laboratory of Neuro Imaging
- NINDS Attention Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder Information Page. National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS/NIH) February 9, 2007. Retrieved on 2007-08-13.
- Dr. Russell A. Barkley Official Site, Authority ADHD, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
- International Consensus Statement on ADHD, January 2002
- Polanczyk G, de Lima MS, Horta BL, Biederman J, Rohde LA (2007). "The worldwide prevalence of ADHD: a systematic review and metaregression analysis". Am J Psychiatry 164 (6): 942–48. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.164.6.942. PMID 17541055.
- PDF (3.71 MB). Centers for Disease Control (March, 2004). Retrieved on December 11, 2006.
- Staller J, Faraone SV. (2006) "Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in girls: epidemiology and management." CNS Drugs. 2006;20(2):107–23. PMID 16478287
- Biederman J, Faraone SV. (2004) "The Massachusetts General Hospital studies of gender influences on attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in youth and relatives." Psychiatr Clin North Am. Jun;27(2):225–32. PMID 15063995
- Attention-Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder: ADHD in Adults. WebMd.com. Retrieved on December 11, 2006.