Diagnosis and Treatment

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

Andy Allen

BEH 225

Kristina Green


    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a disorder where children lack the ability to calmly focus their attention. The disorder was originally known as hyperactivity or simply attention deficit disorder (ADD). The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that three to five percent of children are diagnosed with ADHD (WebMD, 2010). Some experts believe this estimate to be as high as eight to ten percent of school aged children (WebMD, 2010).
Current Diagnoses
    Children with ADHD have a hard time concentrating and following directions. Constant movement and not thinking before they act are common symptoms of ADHD. Though many young children have the same behavior, the symptoms in children with ADHD occur more often and stop them from functioning at school and home.
    ADHD symptoms are usually separated into three categories: inattention, hyperactivity and impulsiveness. A child’s symptoms are categorized into these groups. A child must show six symptoms or more for six months in two different settings such as home and school or home and daycare.
    Symptoms of inattention include failure to give full attention and becoming easily distracted. Symptoms of only inattention are a sign of attention deficit disorder. Though many children rarely follow directions, this is also a symptom of inattention which the child cannot control.
    Hyperactivity and impulsiveness are symptoms of classic attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Symptoms include fidgeting with hands, squirming talking excessively, and always being on the go. Hyperactivity and impulsiveness cause many behavioral issues with children in and outside the home. Children without inattention symptoms are able to pay attention.
    A combination of hyperactivity and impulsiveness plus inattention is the most common form of ADHD. These children experience symptoms from all three...