“Living with ADHD is like being locked in a room with 100 Televisions and 100 Radios all playing. None of them have power buttons so you can turn them off, and the door is locked from the outside.”
- Sarah Young
Contrary to popular belief, ADHD is a real mental disorder, and it is especially common in kids and teenagers. According to The A.D.D Resource Center, “the average age of ADHD diagnosis is 7 years old.” That’s seriously young!
So today, in honor of ADHD Awareness Month, I’m going to talk about the symptoms of ADHD and the methods used to treat it.
First, what is ADHD? According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), ADHD is a “neurodevelopmental disorder.” This means that it is a disorder that affects the way the nervous system works. The brain, spinal cord, sense organs, and the nerves connecting them are all part of the nervous system. The nervous system impacts how a person makes decisions and assesses information, so a neurodevelopmental disorder can change a person’s ability to do so.
Symptoms of ADHD include:
Having difficulty focusing
For more symptoms of ADHD, visit the CDC page of information on ADHD.
How is ADHD Treated?
1. Behavior Therapy: This type of therapy is not conventional; according to Understood, “it focuses on a person’s actions, not on thoughts and emotions.” This therapy is given not only to children/teenagers with ADHD, but also to their parents. This is because sometimes parents can get into behavior that only exacerbates the situation.
Behavior therapy uses a system of incentives and praise to encourage the child to display positive behavior. However, the child’s negative behavior isn’t punished; as stated in the article from Understood, “The point is to reward positive behavior and ignore negative behavior.”
2. Medications: There are two types of ADHD medications: stimulants and non-stimulants. Stimulants are more commonly used, and they take effect quicker, while non-stimulants take a long time to kick in. Both medications are used to reduce the symptoms of the disorder.
ADHD vs. ADD
The official term for the disorder is Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). However, there are many different types of ADHD, and each type has different symptoms. The type that is commonly referred to as Attention-Deficit Disorder (ADD) does not involve fidgeting or hyperactivity. Instead, it largely consists of daydreaming and having “trouble paying attention,” as stated in the article from Web MD.
In other words, ADHD is an umbrella term for all types of the disorder, while ADD is one of the types. However, they are still used interchangeably sometimes.
I hope you were able to learn something new from this article, and that you will spread the word about ADHD Awareness Month. But most importantly, I hope you realize that people with ADHD are just like people without ADHD, so there is no reason to discriminate against them. You can only call yourself “aware” once you understand that people who have mental disorders are just as capable of achieving success as anyone else, so you should treat them as you would anyone else.
Lastly, if you want more information on ADHD, visit the websites listed below.