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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a common diagnosis. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) says as many as 11% of children ages 4-17 have the disorder. ADHD can cause problems for children at school. Children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder may have difficulty paying attention to the teacher’s instructions, following through on assignments, and staying in their seat. Children who have difficulty raising their hand and keeping a calm body are often distracting to other students and challenging for a teacher. As a result, they are often considered behavior problems and may be punished and excluded from classroom learning and activities.

Children diagnosed with ADHD are much more likely to be considered behavior problems and to be diagnosed with Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Conduct Disorder. Some possible reasons for this association is that children with ADHD have difficulty listening and complying with directions. These negative interactions with parents, teachers, and other authority figures seem to be associated with the greater levels of depression and anxiety. A child’s social interactions can also be impaired by their inattention and hyperactivity, which can lead to peer rejection and teasing.

Signs of ADHD

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder symptoms are varied and present in several different ways. Here are some examples:

  • A child fails to pay close attention to details and makes careless mistakes.
  • A child does not seem to really listen to instructions.
  • A child’s backpack is extremely disorganized and he/she forgets to bring home or loses assignments.
  • A child is easily distracted and often forgetful.
  • A child has difficulty staying still for even short periods of time. He/she fidgets, squirms, and runs at inappropriate times.
  • ADHD Treatment for Children and Adolescents

Parent training and behavior management training are effective approaches for treating ADHD in children and adolescents according to the latest research. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) based interventions are conducted with parents and caregivers who learn new strategies for dealing with the symptoms and behaviors associated with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Parents and caregivers learn techniques to improve the parent-child relationship and increase child compliance.

CBT therapists work with children and adolescents on organizational, problem-solving, and communication skills. CBT therapists also help children and adolescents manage other difficulties that are sometimes associated with ADHD, including anxiety, depression, and socialization deficits.