ADD/ADHD in a Nutshell
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) refers to a group of behavior exhibiting trouble paying attention in school, at home or at work. People with this disorder often have a hard time organizing things, listening to instructions, remembering details and controlling their behavior. As a result, people who have ADHD often have problems getting along with other people.
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) refers to the older term used to refer to ADHD. Concurrently, when someone uses the term ADD, it is used to refer to a type of ADHD where the patient simply exhibits inattentiveness (Kinman, 2015).
ADHD is a behavior found in many children, even adults. Most of the time, it goes undiagnosed owing to the fact that children are predisposed to having so much energy and easily distracted by pretty much anything. However, ADHD stretches to the point where the behavior becomes disruptive. Your doctor can help determine whether you or your child has this condition.
As a disorder, some kids outgrow it while others do not. Having a good support system (including parents, siblings, classmates and teachers) can help pave the way to becoming well-adjusted adults.
At least six of the symptoms below are present for persons with ADHD (National Institute of Mental Health, n.d.):
|Inattentive ADHD||Hyperactive/Impulsive ADHD|
|· Has difficulty following instructions· Has difficulty keeping attention on work or play activities at school, work and home· Loses things needed for activities at school, work and home· Appears not to listen
· Doesn’t pay close attention to details
· Seems disorganized
· Has trouble with tasks that require planning ahead
· Forgets things
· Is easily distracted
|· Fidgety· Runs or climbs inappropriately· Can’t play quietly· Blurts out answers
· Interrupts people
· Can’t stay in seat
· Talks too much
· Is always on the go
· Has trouble waiting for his or her turn
Myths and Facts on Causes and Risk Factors
It was believed that ADHD is caused by watching too much TV, playing too much video games and having too much sugar. Although eating too much sugar may cause one to be hyperactive, it does not cause ADHD.
A wealth of evidence proves that ADHD happens because of deficiencies of brain chemicals which affects functions including attention, memory and action (Quist, et al., 2000).
Over the years, it has been established that if ADHD runs in the family, it can be heritable. Other links to ADHD, although still not directly attributable to having the disorder, includes exposure to lead during pregnancy stage, low birth weight and premature birth (Thapar, Cooper, Eyre, & Langley, 2012). The disorder has also been linked to poor eating habits (Sethibe, 2015). The lack of nutrition in food has a ripple effect not only on your physical state but also your mental state (Perlmutter, n.d.). To some extent, studies have been performed correlating increased prevalence of constipation (almost three times more) on kids with ADHD.
Why ADHD needs to be addressed: Implications of unmanaged ADHD during adolescence
Studies over the past 100 years demonstrate that ADHD is a chronic disorder that has a negative impact on virtually every aspect of daily social, emotional, academic and work functioning (Barkley, 1998). Studies show that children with ADHD have higher rates of other psychiatric disorders, higher frequency of hospitalizations, emergency room visits and total medical costs compared to individuals without ADHD (Liebson et al., 2001).
Adolescent outcomes of children with ADHD show that they are more likely to drop out of school, to rarely complete college, to have fewer friends and to participate in antisocial activities more than children without ADHD. Rates of cigarette, alcohol and marijuana use appear more often in those with both ADHD and conduct disorders, and were two to five times more frequent than in adolescents with ADHD alone or for those without it. Later in life, adults with ADHD have employment difficulties, suffer from depression and personality disorders, have multiple auto accidents, and have high rates of sexually transmitted diseases and teen pregnancies compared to individuals without ADHD (Barkley, Fischer, Edelbrock, & Smallish, 1990).
Rx drugs can be obtained with the prescription of your doctor to address and tame symptoms. As a parent of a child with ADHD, it could help if you set a certain routine for your child. Define waking time, play time, eating time and study time. Give short instructions as opposed to lengthy and detailed instructions and focus on giving rewards based on efforts and not necessarily end results.
Complement all efforts with good nutrition. Help your child achieve optimum nutrition with our Attention Liquid Supplement specially formulated and specifically designed to safely aid with focus and proper brain development. A serving of one ounce delivers a battery of B Vitamins and Trace Mineral blend, as well as L-Theanine and a proprietary blend containing amino acids which act as neurotransmitters in the central nervous system (GABA, Taurine and L-Tyrosine). This is best paired with our Advanced Complete Multiple Liquid Supplement, a one stop solution to help balance your diet with the most important vitamin and high quality complexes clinically shown to promote overall health and maintain your body’s proper balance of vitamins and minerals.
Barkley, R. A., Fischer, M., Edelbrock, C. S., & Smallish, L. (1990, July). The Adolescent Outcome of Hyperactive Children Diagnosed by Research Criteria: I. An 8-Year Prospective Follow-up Study. Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 29(4), 546-557. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/00004583-199007000-00007
Kinman, T. (2015, May 14). Healthline. Retrieved August 15, 2015, from Healthline: http://www.healthline.com/health/adhd/difference-between-add-and-adhd#Types2
National Institute of Mental Health. (n.d.). Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Retrieved August 15, 2015, from National Institutes of Health: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/attention-deficit-hyperactivity-disorder-adhd/index.shtml
Perlmutter, D. (n.d.). ADHD – Thinking Beyond the Brain. Retrieved August 15, 2015, from Dr. Perlmutter: http://www.drperlmutter.com/gut-implications-adhd/?hvid=6zeAyn
Quist, J., Barr, C., Schachar, R., W, R., Malone, M., Tannock, R., . . . Kennedy, J. (2000, October). Evidence for the serotonin HTR2A receptor gene as a susceptibility factor in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Molecular Psychiatry, 5, 537-541. doi:10.1038/sj.mp.4000779
Sethibe, V. (2015, August 14). Poor eating habits, ADHD and behavioural problems in youth. Retrieved August 15, 2015, from Mmegi Blogs: http://www.mmegi.bw/index.php?aid=53307&dir=2015/august/13
Thapar, A., Cooper, M., Eyre, O., & Langley, K. (2012, September 11). Practitioner Review: What have we learnt about the causes of ADHD? Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 54(1), 3-16. doi:10.1111/j.1469-7610.2012.02611.x