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Determining whether or whether a child has ADHD is a multi-step process. This article will provide you with an outline of how ADHD is diagnosed. There is no one test to identify ADHD, and many other issues, such as sleep disorders, anxiety, depression, and certain forms of learning difficulties, might show symptoms that are similar to ADHD.
If you are concerned that your child may have ADHD, the first step is to consult with a healthcare specialist to see if the symptoms match the diagnosis. A mental health expert, such as a psychologist or psychiatrist, or a primary care physician, such as a pediatrician, can make the diagnosis.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) suggests that healthcare providers inquire about the child’s conduct in various situations, such as at home, school, or with peers, from parents, teachers, and other people who care for the kid. Learn more about the suggestions.
The healthcare professional should also assess whether the child has another ailment that can either better explain the symptoms or occurs concurrently with ADHD. Find out more about various issues and ailments. Also, you must try to play this ADHD Quiz.
How is ADHD identified?
To diagnose ADHD, healthcare providers follow the recommendations in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fifth Edition (DSM-5)1. This diagnostic standard aids in ensuring that patients with ADHD are properly diagnosed and treated. Using the same criteria across areas can also assist identify how many children have ADHD and how this disease affects public health.
Symptoms in Children and Adolescents
ADHD symptoms in children and teenagers are clearly established, and they frequently appear before the age of six. They can be found in more than one setting, such as at home and at school.
Children may exhibit symptoms of both inattention and hyperactivity and impulsiveness, or they may exhibit only one of these types of behavior.
Absence of attention (difficulty concentrating and focusing)
The following are the primary indicators of inattentiveness:
- having a short attention span and being easily distracted making careless mistakes – for example, in schoolwork seeming forgetful or forgetting things being unable to stick to laborious or time-consuming chores being unable to listen to or follow directions
- unable to organize duties due to a frequent change in activity or task
- Impulsiveness and hyperactivity
- The following are the primary indicators of hyperactivity and impulsiveness:
- being unable to sit motionless, particularly in peaceful or quiet situations
- difficult to concentrate on work due to frequent fidgeting
- excessive physical activity excessive speaking
- being unable to wait their time, acting without thinking, and interfering with talks
- There is little or no sensation of risk.
- These symptoms can lead to serious problems in a child’s life, such as academic underachievement, poor social contact with other children and adults, and behavioral issues.
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ADHD-related illnesses in children and teenagers
Although this is not usually the case, some children may exhibit symptoms of additional problems or conditions in addition to ADHD, such as:
- Anxiety disorder – causes your child to be anxious and worried most of the time; it may also produce physical symptoms such as a racing heart, sweating, and dizziness.
- Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) is characterized by negative and disruptive behavior, especially toward authority figures such as parents and teachers.
- Conduct disorder is characterized by a proclivity for severely antisocial behavior, such as stealing, fighting, vandalism, and injuring people or animals.
- Sleep issues include difficulty falling asleep at night and unpredictable sleeping habits.
- ASD impairs social interaction, communication, interests, and behavior.
- Dyspraxia is a disorder that hampers bodily coordination.
- Epilepsy is a disorder that affects the brain and causes fits or seizures on a regular basis.
- Tourette’s syndrome is a nervous system disorder characterized by a combination of uncontrollable noises and movements (tics)
- Dyslexia is one example of a learning disability.
- Adults’ Symptoms
- ADHD symptoms in adulthood are more difficult to define. This is primarily owing to a scarcity of studies on people with ADHD.
Because ADHD is a developmental illness, it is thought that it cannot develop in adults unless it initially appears in infancy. However, symptoms of ADHD in adolescents and teenagers can persist into adulthood.
Inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsiveness can impact adults in quite different ways than they do children.
Adults, for example, tend to lose hyperactivity while retaining inattentiveness as the rigors of adult life mount.