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What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

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What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, commonly abbreviated as adhd or ADD, is a behavioral condition that affects both children and adults alike. It’s characterized by difficulties with focus, attention to details, and following instructions.

ADHD symptoms can vary significantly between individuals. For instance, some may exhibit primarily inattentive symptoms while others exhibit more hyperactivity-impulsivity.

The most widely prescribed medication to treat ADHD is stimulant medication. These chemicals increase dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the brain, two chemicals which aid with thinking and attention.

Stimulants are typically prescribed by psychiatrists or other mental health professionals. They may be combined with a non-stimulant drug in order to increase the efficacy of both medications.

ADHD can be treated with psychotherapy, specialized behavior modification strategies and other treatment methods. These approaches may include addressing a child’s individual difficulties with attention, social skills and self-control.

Parents can help their children manage this disorder by setting clear rules and expectations, rewarding good behavior with praise or rewards, and using positive reinforcement instead of negative criticism when a child is behaving well. Furthermore, parents can use strategies like making lists and breaking large tasks down into manageable pieces to reduce frustration and anxiety.

ADHD medications can be taken daily, as needed, or in low doses during the day or evening. Examples include atomoxetine, viloxazine, guanfacine, and clonidine.

Researchers still do not fully understand the cause of ADHD, but some researchers suspect a combination of genetic and environmental factors. A family history of the disorder and any behavioral or emotional problems in a child can both increase one’s likelihood for developing it. Symptoms may begin as early as age 3 and persist through adolescence and adulthood.

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