Symptoms of ADHD

What is ADHD?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, ADHD, is a mental health disorder which leads to unnatural levels of hyperactivity and impulsive behaviors. People with this condition could also have trouble concentrating on a thing or single task and sitting still for longer spans. Some people might also feel deviations in their energy levels and experience inattention. It could have a significant effect on their work, academic, or home lifestyle. The symptoms are evident throughout different life stages thought the intensity may differ.  

Here in this article, we will take a detailed look at the ADHD Symptoms for adults, teens, and children.

Symptoms of ADHD

Symptoms of ADHD: Children

ADHD symptoms are mostly linked to inattention, hyperactivity-impulsivity, or sometimes a blend of both. Having ADHD could lead the person to have trouble focusing, being organized, and having problems with self-control. Some specific symptoms of ADHD among children include:

•    Difficulties to concentrate and getting distracted soon
•    Decreased attention time while doing a particular job or activity like homework or playing
•    Inability to sitting still for a longer duration
•    In constant need of movement and frequently going about here and there
•    Participating in activities disruptively
•    Excessive talking, interfering, or disturbing others around

Symptoms of ADHD: Teenagers

As a child with ADHD grows up, the intensity of the symptoms could change. For certain situations, some symptoms seen in childhood might get less problematic in teens, while new symptoms might come up during the changing responsibilities that come along as the child gets older. In teenagers, the ADHD symptoms might include:

•    Problems concentrating on schoolwork or academic kinds of works
•    Difficulties in wrapping up tasks, especially chores or school works
•    Forgetting things randomly, and losing personal items
•    Avoiding mentally taxing activities
•    Feeling greater frustration and emotional sensitivity
•    Difficulties navigating social relationships
•    Increased conflicts with parents and family members as an effect of the ADHD symptoms.

A significant point to note is, that these signs of hyperactivity and attention deficit are considered as a child’s "immaturity" in general. However, the ADHD symptoms have less to do with the individual's maturity level since the origin of these symptoms is brain biochemistry.  

Symptoms of ADHD: Adults

In most cases, people with ADHD receive a diagnosis during childhood. However, in some cases, these early signs could be overlooked. But, till the time the symptoms are visible in the individual before 12 years of age, they can still get a diagnosis in adulthood. Based on the diagnosis, intervention and management in the prior stages of development; ADHD symptoms during can greatly differ from those during adolescence stage. Adults with ADHD, mostly experience:
•    Attention related issues at work or college
•    Difficulties in completing work or getting along in a class
•    Problems with self-esteem and overall mental well being
•    Substance misuse activities like alcohol
•    Regular injuries
•    Problems and challenges in relationships with parents, friends, partners, or colleagues

ADHD Symptoms in Girls and Women

While ADHD could affect any individual irrespective of gender, some research suggests it's four times more common in women than men. According to recent research, females often go through the blend of both inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive symptoms, many of which are less risky than the opposite sex, especially in the hyperactive-impulsive segment of symptoms.

Other mentionable differences in ADHD symptoms in women include:
•    Greater difficulties with mood swings and emotional regulation
•    A greater similarity of some social issues, like with bullying
•    Greater challenges in academic domain and self-esteem

Moreover, ADHD symptoms could get more severe with age and during phases of transition like puberty and adulthood. Various hormonal changes that happen with menstruation, pregnancy, or menopause could even result in the worsening of the symptoms.

Treatment for ADHD

Without proper diagnosis and treatment, ADHD symptoms could aggravate with time and could lead to different issues, putting a negative effect on your functioning at home, at school, at work, or in relationships. Presence of symptoms like unjustified restless, hyperactivity, inability to sit at one place and concentrate must be alarming to parents and caregivers. Once the ADHD diagnosis is done, one might find the following treatment options to be suitable for better functioning in his day-to-day life.

Therapy: One of the most beneficial therapy types in this regard is Behavioral therapy, which helps to identify and improve the undesired and unacceptable behavioral patterns. For children, the training aims towards parent training, classroom management, social skill training, etc. For adults, cognitive behavioral therapy is useful.

Medication: Medication can either be used alone or in conjunction with behavioral therapy, decreasing the ADHD symptoms in both children and adults.

Lifestyle Changes: Lifestyle changes include strategies that could help the individual through inattentiveness and hyperactivities. The following structures could be helpful:
•    Developing organizational techniques
•    Applying time management strategies
•    Comprehensive tuning of the study skills

Wrapping Up

ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder that leads a person to experience inattention or hyperactivity or sometimes, a mixture of the two. In children, the symptoms could be misunderstood by the caregivers to be the child’s “immaturity” while in adults the signs could regularly intervene in the everyday activities. With the right set of guidance and proper treatment, the person concerned could learn to cope with the symptoms and get a better lifestyle.

This article was meant to provide information on ADHD symptoms, and how a timely diagnosis followed by the right treatment plan, could result in better improved quality of life. The Signs and symptoms of the disorder usually differ across the lifespan but comprehensive management plan improves quality of life in every phase. The symptoms should be overlooked and a timely consultation could do wonders.  

Note: The article is meant for reader's general awareness. Kindly consult a mental health professional for diagnosis, treatment and management of ADHD as well as other mental health disorders.

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