Could it be ADHD?

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Could it be ADHD?

Kids will be kids. But how do you know if their actions are concerning enough to be a medical condition?

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common neurodevelopmental conditions affecting children. It is associated with an ongoing pattern of inattention, hyperactivity, and/or impulsivity. The disorder can interfere with daily activities, social relationships, and school performance. It begins in childhood and can continue as a teen or adult. ADHD symptoms include:

  • Inattention—Difficulty paying attention
  • Hyperactivity—Too much energy or moving and talking too much
  • Impulsivity—Acting without thinking or having difficulty with self-control

Some people with ADHD mainly have symptoms of inattention. Others mostly have symptoms of hyperactivity-impulsivity. Some people have both types of symptoms. The symptoms can be mild, moderate, or severe.

The cause of ADHD is unknown, but current research reveals that genetics plays an important role, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Diagnosing ADHD in young children is difficult since developmental problems, such as language delays, can be mistaken for ADHD, according to the Mayo Clinic.

There is no single test to diagnose ADHD. One step involves having a medical exam, including hearing and vision tests, to rule out other problems. Preschool children or younger who are suspected of having ADHD more likely need to be evaluated by a specialist, such as a psychologist or psychiatrist, speech pathologist, or developmental pediatrician.

ADHD is a highly treatable disorder. Medications and behavior therapy can help manage symptoms but will not cure the condition.