ADHD in Children: Symptoms and Treatment

Individuals with ADHD can be very successful in life. However, without identification and proper treatment, ADHD may have serious consequences, including school failure, family stress and disruption, depression, problems with relationships, substance abuse, delinquency, accidental injuries and job failure. Early identification and treatment are extremely important.

The information provided by CHADD’s National Resource Center on ADHD is supported by Cooperative Agreement Number NU38DD000002 funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Its contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of the CDC or the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

That can also help determine what type of ADHD treatment a person might need. Those whose symptoms fall on the more significant end of the spectrum might receive multiple treatments. These might include ADHD medication and behavioral strategies. People with milder symptoms may receive only behavioral strategies.

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Recent genetic studies have looked at attention skills in the general population. They found that there’s a natural spectrum of functioning, with ADHD at one extreme.

Despite multiple studies, researchers have yet to determine the exact causes of ADHD. However, scientists have discovered a strong genetic link since ADHD can run in families. More than 20 genetic studies have shown evidence that ADHD is strongly inherited. Yet ADHD is a complex disorder, which is the result of multiple interacting genes.

Severity of symptoms

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She works with an organizational coach to build skills. She talked with her doctor about medication. But she decided her symptoms were mild enough that behavioral strategies would be enough to help her cope.

Other factors in the environment may increase the likelihood of having ADHD:

In 1994, the name of the disorder was changed in a way that is confusing for many people. Since that time all forms of attention deficit disorder are officially called “Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder,” regardless of whether the individual has symptoms of hyperactivity or not. Even though these are the official labels, a lot of professionals and lay people still use both terms: ADD and ADHD. Some use those terms to designate the old subtypes; others use ADD just as a shorter way to refer to any presentation.

What does mild adhd look like

This is why diagnosing ADHD can be tricky. ADHD isn’t an all-or-nothing thing. And sometimes, what looks like ADHD might not be a sign of an issue at all.

For that reason, his doctor has prescribed medication for ADHD. The school has given him IEP services and supports. He gets classroom accommodations and works with a specialist to improve executive function skills.

A. This is a great question, and the short answer is “yes.” ADHD symptoms exist on a spectrum or a continuum. But the longer answer is a little bit more complicated. There are two important factors to consider: the type of symptoms a person has and how intense the symptoms are.

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ADHD predominantly inattentive presentation

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The following factors are NOT known causes, but can make ADHD symptoms worse for some children:

Imagine a fifth grader with severe ADHD symptoms. He has serious difficulty paying attention in school. He’s frequently out of his seat in the classroom, blurts out answers to questions, and is so distracted by even the slightest noise that he has trouble doing almost anything in class.

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