Attention deficit disorder with or without hyperactivity (ADHD) affects between 5% and 8% of children. ADHD can affect different aspects of their lives, whether at personal, school, family or social level, which is why it’s so important to detect it. In this article, find out what the symptoms are and what solutions you can put in place to better live with it. To get more details about ADHD, consult a doctor.

Consult a doctor

What is ADHD?

Attention Deficit Disorder with or without Hyperactivity (ADHD) is a common neurological problem caused by abnormalities in brain development and function. The disorder can be hereditary, the result of environmental factors (tobacco, pesticides or solvents breathed in during pregnancy, for example) or caused by other physiological reasons.

What are the signs of ADHD in children?

Children with ADHD often display inattention, impulsivity and/or hyperactivity. Symptoms are mainly detected between the ages of 6 and 9, when the child starts school.

Main symptoms of hyperactivity:

  • Agitated, moves limbs
  • Can’t sit still or still
  • Runs and climbs everywhere
  • Talks a lot

Main symptoms of impulsivity:

  • Cuts off, answers before end of question
  • Imposes presence or ideas
  • Has difficulty waiting turn

Main symptoms of inattention:

  • Lack of concentration, easily distracted
  • Disorganized, difficulty completing projects
  • Lack of attention, forgetfulness and carelessness
  • Doesn’t notice details

Symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity are more frequent in boys, while those of inattention are more frequent in girls. As the brain matures during adolescence, the disorder tends to diminish or even disappear. It’s also important to note that these symptoms are not specific to ADHD and can be found in other conditions.

How is attention deficit disorder diagnosed?

It’s advisable to consult a health professional (doctor or nurse) as soon as symptoms become a problem in your child’s life, such as learning difficulties at school, anxiety or relationship problems. If this is the case, it is advisable to make an appointment with a doctor.

A teacher may also recommend screening. However, it’s up to your doctor to make the diagnosis. The health professional will answer all your questions and may suggest different types of tests for your child:

  • Attention tests
  • Psychological tests
  • Neuropsychological tests
  • Assessment based on the child’s behavior

How is ADHD treated in children?

There is no miracle cure for ADHD, but many treatments help to reduce the symptoms and consequences of this condition. The most common treatments are medication and behavioural and psychological therapy.

However, the most important thing for your child is to help him or her put in place an adaptive strategy. This involves teaching them to live with their disorder, for example by introducing rules and routines adapted to their situation and environment.

Consult a professional for ADHD

A specialist nurse, paediatrician or family doctor are the best people to ask about your child’s ADHD. They will ask you all the questions you need to understand the situation, suggest a suitable test and then, depending on the diagnosis, a suitable treatment and strategy. Don’t hesitate to consult a healthcare professional for more information!

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