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Adhd In Adolescence

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ADHD in Adolescence

Parents are distressed when they receive a note from school saying that their child won't listen to the teacher or causes trouble in class. One possible reason for this kind of behavior is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

Even though the child with ADHD often wants to be a good student, the impulsive behavior and difficulty paying attention in class frequently interferes and causes problems. Teachers, parents, and friends know that the child is misbehaving or different but they may not be able to tell exactly what is wrong.

Any child may show inattention, distractibility, impulsivity, or hyperactivity at times, but the child with ADHD shows these symptoms and behaviors more frequently and severely than other children of the same age or developmental level. ADHD occurs in 3-5% of school age children (Attention 1999). ADHD must begin before the age of seven and it can continue into adulthood. ADHD runs in families with about 25% of biological parents also having this medical condition (Attention 1999).

A child with ADHD often shows some of the following:

trouble paying attention

inattention to details and makes careless mistakes

easily distracted

loses school supplies, forgets to turn in homework

trouble finishing class work and homework

trouble listening

trouble following multiple adult commands

blurts out answers


fidgets or squirms

leaves seat and runs about or climbs excessively

seems "on the go"

talks too much and has difficulty playing quietly

interrupts or intrudes on others

A child presenting with ADHD symptoms should have a comprehensive evaluation. Parents should ask their pediatrician or family physician to refer them to a child and adolescent psychiatrist, who can diagnose and treat this medical condition. A child with ADHD may also have other psychiatric disorders such as conduct disorder, anxiety disorder, depressive disorder, or bipolar disorder. These children may also have learning



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