Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a behavioral disorder that includes a variety of symptoms such as inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsive behavior. This condition is generally detected at an early age or during childhood, between the ages of 6 and 12.
As the child gets older, the ADHD condition may improve. However, it is not uncommon for adults who have dealt with ADHD to experience certain behavioral disorders when they enter old age.
People with ADHD may also experience additional problems such as anxiety disorders and sleep disorders.
Children with ADHD tend to have low self-confidence, experience problems interacting with other people, and perform poorly at school. As they get older, these symptoms can change.
In some cases, people with ADHD do not need special treatment to improve their condition. They are able to find the most appropriate strategy for themselves to live a normal life.
ADHD treatment will not immediately cure the condition, but rather, relieve the symptoms. . Treatment usually involves taking certain medications and behavioral therapy.
Causes of ADHD
The exact cause of ADHD is unknown. However, genetic factors have an important role. Parents who have a history of ADHD are more likely to pass on the condition to their children.
Based on research, there are a number of differences in the brains of children with ADHD compared to children without the condition. There are also other factors that can trigger ADHD, such as:
- People who were born underweight
- Babies born prematurely, before the 37th week of pregnancy.
- Pregnant women who smoke and use drugs during pregnancy
Some researchers say that the habits of consuming too much sugar and watching TV are one of the causes of children experiencing ADHD. However, this is still debatable.
ADHD is more common in children who have difficulty learning. However, people with high intellectual levels may also develop ADHD.
When to See a Doctor for ADHD?
If parents feel that their child has ADHD symptoms, they should consult a pediatrician first and then a psychiatrist.
Before consulting a doctor, parents can talk to the teachers at school to confirm the child’s condition.
During the consultation, the doctor will conduct a medical interview with questions about:
- Family history of ADHD sufferers.
- Symptoms experienced by children and when those symptoms began.
- Whether these symptoms affect the child’s daily life
- Where symptoms occur most frequently, either at home or school.
- Other symptoms or health conditions that the child or parent may experience.
- Whether there have been any recent important events that had an impact on the child, such as a divorce or someone’s death
Apart from a medical interview, there are no specific tests to diagnose ADHD symptoms. However, to make a diagnosis, the doctor may need to:
- Gather information through medical interviews.
- Adjust the child’s symptoms to ADHD criteria according to the manual.
- Provide a child ADHD rating scale to evaluate information regarding the child’s condition.
- Distribute questionnaires or conduct interviews with teachers, parents, or people who know the child well.
- Carry out a medical examination to rule out other possible causative factors.
Symptoms of ADHD
ADHD symptoms vary from person to person and can change as you age. The main symptoms most often seen in people with ADHD are inattentive, hyperactive and impulsive behavior.
Lack of attention can be observed when the child starts entering school. This attitude is indicated by the habit of procrastinating and not completing schoolwork and homework. In addition, the child can also be observed to have difficulty paying attention to things.
Hyperactive behavior occurs at different ages. Sometimes, these symptoms can be seen before the child enters schooling age or may also appear before high school.
Children with hyperactive behavior are usually easily agitated and cannot sit still. In addition, they tend to run into inappropriate situations and speak in rapid and exaggerated intonation.
Impulsive behavior involves impatience and having difficulty waiting for his/her turn to speak. The child with this behavior may rush forward with an answer before the question has been read/raised. They may also initiate conversations in inappropriate situations.
Treatment for ADHD
Many people who developed ADHD as children get better on their own as they get older. However, there are also some children who do not succeed in overcoming the ADHD condition even when they grow to become adults.
ADHD treatment can help relieve your child’s symptoms and help them to carry out daily activities. This condition must be supported by treatment through therapy.
Therapy and medication for children with ADHD will usually be carried out by a psychiatrist and a pediatrician.
Medications for children with ADHD usually consist of five types of drugs, namely:
These medications cannot completely cure ADHD, but they can help patients to concentrate, be calmer, and to be able to learn new skills.
Finding the most appropriate medication and therapy options for people with ADHD can take a long time. Therefore, it is important for parents to report their child’s progress to the doctor and pay attention to the medications’ side effects regularly. The report will be a huge factor in determining the most suitable treatment.
Apart from medications, treatment of ADHD patients can also be done through behavior therapy. Therapy will not only relieve ADHD symptoms, but also help with other behavioral problems such as anxiety disorders.
These are the available types of therapy for ADHD patients:
- Behavioral therapy, carried out by parents and teachers by making behavior change strategies, such as presenting small gifts to children who manage to wait patiently
- Psychotherapy, targeted at older or adolescent patients of ADHD. Patients will be invited to talk about problems that bother them, explore negative behavior patterns and find solutions to overcome them.
- Family therapy, aimed at family members of children with ADHD in order to manage stress and support the patient’s recovery
Treatment Cost for ADHD
The cost for ADHD treatment varies, depending on the severity and the treatment method chosen.
For more information regarding the estimated costs of ADHD treatment, contact Smarter Health.
Prevention of ADHD
It is unknown what triggers a person to develop ADHD. Therefore, no exact preventive measures can be taken. However, there are several considerations that parents can take, such as:
- Avoid consuming harmful ingredients during pregnancy.
- Protect children from exposure to pollution and toxins, including cigarette smokes and paint.
Home Remedies for Patients Diagnosed with ADHD
For parents, there are several things you can do to treat children with ADHD at home:
- Give lots of love and affection to the child. Children need to be listened to, and feel loved and appreciated.
- Look for ways to boost your child’s confidence.
- Implement appropriate consequences to discipline the child, be firm, yet compassionate at the same time
- Encourage children to have social interactions.