ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects both children and adults. Around 7% of school-age children in India suffer from ADHD, one of the most prevalent neurodevelopmental diseases in childhood. Although it can affect anyone, boys are more likely to experience it than girls.
Diagnosis & Symptoms
A trained health expert, such as a doctor in the field of developmental medicine, psychologist or psychiatrist, diagnoses ADHD. Standardized tests, rating scales, and clinical interviews are frequently used in the diagnosis procedure. Inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity are the three main signs and symptoms of ADHD.
- Inattentiveness: Children with ADHD may have trouble focusing on specifics, make thoughtless errors in their work or other activities, and act as though they are not listening when spoken to directly. Also, they could struggle to start and finish jobs, organise their work, and carry out directions.
- Hyperactivity: Children with ADHD may be fidgety and restless, find it difficult to stay still, and constantly be on the go. Moreover, they may talk too much, run or climb too much, and have trouble playing quietly.
- Impulsivity: Youngsters who have ADHD may behave impulsively, have trouble waiting their turn, and interrupt others. Moreover, they could struggle to regulate their emotions and frequently lose their temper.
Myths vs. Facts
There are numerous widespread misconceptions and preconceptions about ADHD. The most typical ones are shown below, along with supporting facts:
- Myth: Just a behaviour issue causes ADHD.
- Fact: ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder, meaning that it results from variations in the brain functioning.
- Myth: ADHD patients have trouble focusing on anything.
- Fact: Children with ADHD can focus on things that interest them, but they may find it difficult to pay attention to things that are dull or difficult.
- Myth: ADHD will eventually go away in kids.
- Fact : Indeed, ADHD requires lifelong therapy, but it is manageable.
Impact on Daily Life
- Academics: Children with ADHD may have trouble focusing in class, finishing their work, and completing assignments. Also, they can be more likely to experience behavioural issues at school.
- Social interactions: Children with ADHD may struggle to make and maintain friendships. They could also be more prone to interpersonal disputes.
- General health: Children with ADHD may struggle with despair, anxiety, and low self-esteem. They might also be more inclined to indulge in harmful activities like drug usage.
- Coexisting Conditions : ADHD frequently coexists with other illnesses such autism spectrum disorder, learning impairments, anxiety, and depression. To maximise a child’s overall growth and wellbeing, it is crucial to recognise and address any coexisting illnesses.
- Therapies: Counselling can assist kids with ADHD in developing coping mechanisms, behaviour management, and social skills.
- Medicine: Medication can aid with impulse control, attentiveness, and focus.
- Lifestyle adjustments: Making lifestyle adjustments like exercising frequently, eating well, and getting adequate sleep can also help to reduce the symptoms of ADHD. Adhering to screentime guidelines is also important to manage behaviours.
Parenting and Family
Although raising a child with ADHD might be difficult, it’s vital to keep in mind that you’re not doing it alone. These are some pointers for raising an ADHD child:
- Be upbeat and motivating: Negative feedback is frequently experienced by children with ADHD. It’s critical to concentrate on their abilities and successes.
- Provide structure and routine: An atmosphere that is predictable and structured is beneficial for kids with ADHD. Set up consistent schedules for your meals, bedtime, and schoolwork.
- Divide tasks into manageable chunks: Complex tasks may be challenging for kids with ADHD. Tasks should be broken down into smaller, easier-to-handle phases.
- Provide regular breaks because children with ADHD may struggle to remain still for extended periods of time. Give them frequent breaks so they may stretch their legs and let off some steam.
The idea of neurodiversity holds that each brain is unique and that there is no such thing as a “normal” brain. The neurodiversity movement promotes the inclusion and acceptance of individuals with all brain types, including those with ADHD. It’s critical to recognise each person with ADHD for their specific qualities. Kids with ADHD are frequently imaginative, active, and eager. They might also possess a strong sense of compassion and fairness.