Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: What is it, Causes, Symptoms and Treatment of ADHD

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a particularly common behavior disorder. Affecting up to 10% of children and often lasting into adulthood, this neurological disease results in a person’s inability to focus their attention long enough on one thing.
In this article, you will find all the information on attention disorders with or without hyperactivity ADHD.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

ADHD is a neurological disorder. People who have it have difficulty controlling their behavior and / or maintaining their concentration. Usually diagnosed in childhood, this disorder very often continues to develop into adulthood.
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder manifests itself through three main properties:
These three characteristics are considered “normal” in the development and awakening of all children to some degree and time in their life and under certain circumstances: at school only, at home only, etc. .
In a hyperactive child, however, these symptoms are more important, even amplified. Affecting all aspects of his life, without any exceptions, they are not only persistent, but also long-lasting.
The causes of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

The causes of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

ADHD is a neurobehavioural disease. Neurological, because it is caused by an abnormality located in certain areas of the brain responsible for attention; and behavioral because this failure would have repercussions on the child’s sense of organization, but also on his movements, which he struggles to control.
According to the researchers, two areas of the brain are involved in the onset of ADHD symptoms:
  • The frontal lobe, which is normally responsible for inhibiting the organization and modulation of responses, three functions that are absent in hyperactive children;
  • The striatum, whose malfunction made the reactions commanded by the brain fail.
Other factors can also be mentioned: hormones, genetics, and the environment and brain trauma.

The Hormonal Factor

In some people with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, researchers have noticed a deficiency in certain neurotransmitters, responsible for mood and behavior, in the brain. These include:
  • Dopamine, which plays an important role in motivation and attention;
  • Norepinephrine, which plays an important role in the learning process, but also in memorization and the notion of caution.
Low production of these neurotransmitters not only leads to lack of attention, but also a tendency to impulsivity in hyperactive children.
The Genetic Factor

The Genetic Factor

Genetics play a major role in the onset of ADHD in children because it appears to be hereditary.
The prevalence of the disease among relatives of an overactive person is indeed very high. Almost 25% of hyperactive parents give birth to children with ADHD. In addition, studies of identical twins have shown that while one has attention deficit disorder, only 20% of the time the other does not. In other words, in 80% of cases, both children were simultaneously affected.

The Environmental Factor

ADHD can be caused by a high exposure of the child to toxic products such as lead or mercury, but also organophosphate pesticides, during pregnancy or breastfeeding.
Studies have also shown that certain food additives, including colors and preservatives, can induce a condition similar to attention deficit disorder in children genetically predisposed to the disease.
Risk factors

Risk factors

Are also predisposed to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder:
  • Children born prematurely;
  • Children who lacked oxygen at birth;
  • Children with head trauma;
  • Children with bacterial meningitis;
  • Children born to alcoholic mothers who smoke.
Note that attention deficit disorder with or without hyperactivity is not due to a psychoaffective or psychosocial disorder. Contrary to popular belief, the hyperactive child does not lack attention or affection. He may need it, however, as as he grows up he will be more and more aware of his difference and, without the affection and help of those around him, he risks turning in on himself.
It should also be noted that although ADHD, if not treated in time, can cause great difficulty in school, it does not call into question the intelligence of the person who suffers from it. In other words, a hyperactive child can be extremely intelligent, but his inability to concentrate will, in the majority of cases, lead to academic failure.
How to recognize Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Symptoms: How to recognize Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder?

The three main symptoms of ADHD are inattention, hyperactivity and impulsiveness. These three manifestations can be present simultaneously in children, to varying degrees, but they can also be separated randomly. We can thus distinguish three forms of ADHD:
  • Attention deficit without hyperactivity disorder
  • Attention deficit with hyperactivity disorder
  • Hyperactivity and / or impulsivity
A child is said to be “hyperactive” if he has at least 6 symptoms of inattention and / or 6 symptoms of hyperactivity or impulsivity, and / or 6 symptoms of inattention with hyperactivity and impulsivity.
Symptoms of Inattention

Symptoms of Inattention

A child may have attention deficit disorder without showing signs of hyperactivity. He is usually and very often “in the moonlight” and not able to concentrate on just one thing. Little concerned with details,
  • he accumulates careless mistakes in his homework;
  • he is unable to complete a task to the end;
  • he rarely pays attention to what is said to him;
  • it is poorly organized, disorderly in its activities;
  • he often misplaces the objects which belong to him;
  • he becomes distracted and easily distracted;
  • he avoids activities requiring sustained mental effort;
  • he has no notion of rules and disciplines, so he is considered a rude and rebellious child.
Symptoms of Hyperactivity and Impulsivity

Symptoms of Hyperactivity and Impulsivity

A child may also have hyperactivity without showing signs of inattention. Unable to keep still, he can concentrate on a task if he takes the trouble, as long as it interests him. In school, he is often seen as a disruptive and rude child. Generally,
  • he is unable to sit quietly in a chair without squirming;
  • he is unable to remain seated in class, he gets up despite the instructions;
  • he talks too much, even when you are not talking to him;
  • he answers questions before we have even finished asking them;
  • he is particularly turbulent, runs and climbs everywhere without any awareness of the danger;
  • he is impatient and has great difficulty in waiting for his turn in games and other activities;
  • he has no control over his actions and words, which often makes him aggressive;
  • he doesn’t like rules;
  • he has mood disorders, spontaneously changing from joy to sadness and anger.

Symptoms of Inattention with Hyperactivity and Impulsivity

Called mixed-type Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder encompasses at least 6 symptoms of inattention and 6 symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity.
Diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

The Diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Although symptoms appear in early childhood, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is not really noticed until the age of 5 to 7 years, when the consequences of the neurological disorder no longer go unnoticed: failure at school, endangering oneself and others. Others, mood swings, hypersensitivity, aggressiveness, etc.
As soon as the symptoms persist for more than six months and have repercussions on the child’s life, it is therefore advisable to consult.
In the absence of a precise medical examination and analysis that can establish a certain and concise diagnosis, it is established from a thorough assessment of the child’s life and behavior, based on psychological tests. And neuropsychological, but also on certain scales (De Conners). Some specialists also base their diagnosis on the behavioral criteria of the fifth edition of the DSMMD (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders.
Treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

The Treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

There is no cure that can cure ADHD. The treatments offered to date are not aimed at treating this neurological disorder, but at alleviating its symptoms in order to allow the hyperactive child to live normally, but above all to bypass the consequences of the disease: school failures, lack of self-confidence, complex, rejection, etc.
Management is carried out on two fronts: medication to alleviate any neurological and hormonal deficit, and psychosocial assistance to help the child integrate into society.

Psychosocial Care

In addition to taking medication, doctors also recommend psychosocial follow-up to help hyperactive children control the symptoms of their disease, promote their attention span and minimize the psychological impact of their disorder.
A consultation with a psychologist or psychotherapist for family and behavior therapy can therefore be considered. It has been observed that the simultaneous participation of the doctor, parents, teachers and psychoeducators in the management of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder gave much more satisfactory results.
Note that without treatment – medical and psychosocial, a hyperactive child has a 50% chance of getting into trouble with the law and ending up in jail because of his aggression and impulsiveness as an adult.

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