November 24, 2006

Childhood illness- ADHD


ADHD - Attention Deficit Hyperactivitiy Disorder
ADHD or Attention-Deficit Hyperactivitiy Disorder is a disorder that deals with behavior and development problems in children, and if left untreated in adults.

What are the symptoms ADHD symptoms are as follows: impulsiveness, hyperactivity, inability to concentrate, easily distracted by sights and/or sounds, restlessness, tendency to daydream, and an inability to complete projects/tasks at a rate suitable for their age level. Symptoms vary from patient to patient, and range from mild to severe.

The causes of ADHD are unable to be evidenced in proven studies. Opinions in physicians do acclaim that the brains of patients with the condition are different than the patients with normal brain activity.

Diagnosis and treatment
Since ADHD is such a broad disorder there is no single test to proper identify the condition. Rather ADHD is diagnosed after months of observation on a regular basis to pin point whether or not their symptoms pertain to ADHD. Diagnosing ADHD also entails gathering information from other avenues where the child is in constant attendence, such as school, child care, and/or home. Then the doctor will weigh how your childs behavior contrasts to that of other children within the same age group. Since medical problems can also contribute to some of the symptoms evidenced by ADHD your childs doctor will perform an additional physical exam to make sure none of the symptoms are a result of a pre-existing condition.There is no cure for ADHD, but symptoms can alleviate due to certain treatments. Your childs doctor can choose to use stimulants to help the patient which are medications used to treat ADHD whether moderate or severe in children over 6 years old. Your childs doctor may also try antidepressant therapy, which are medications used commonly to treat patients who are depressed. It is proven, however, that antidepressants are not as successful as stimulants or other treatments at controlling all around symptoms. Antidepressant therapy also typically takes longer for full effectiveness to occur. It has also been shown that two drugs categorized Catapres and Guanfacine, which are commonly used to treat high blood pressure have some affect on ADHD patients when used alone or with other stimulants. If you are not comfortable using medication to treat your child there are behavior management techniques available to replace or be used in addtion to medication. Most studies and experts agree that a combination of both medication and the afore mentioned techniques is the most successful way to help children with ADHD to recover to the best of their ability. It is best to ask your childs doctor what is the best treatment for your child. Symptoms of ADHD may also alleviate over time as your child progresses into adulthood.

Adapted from SureBaby