October is ADHD Awareness Month.
Let’s start with some quick facts about ADHD:
ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder, as defined by the American Psychological Association
ADHD can be diagnosed in children 6+ and adults
There are 3 types of ADHD
ADHD symptoms need to be present in more than one area of life
ADHD is often an underlying factor for anxiety, depression, oppositional behavior, and relationship challenges
ADHD impacts the executive functioning area of the brain
ADHD management often needs to include multiple things, such as diet/exercise, medication, and therapy
ADHD brains reach maturation later than neurotypical brains. This is particularly evident in social-emotional development
ADHD is life-long. Symptoms can be managed, however, there is no “permanent treatment or cure" for ADHD
ADHD is about much more than the behaviors that you see. It is actually about the brain processes and functioning that make it difficult to focus, control impulses, stay organized and attentive.
There are 3 types of ADHD:
1. ADHD predominantly inattentive (previously known as ADD)
This type is most common in girls as it does not always look like “classic” ADHD. Symptoms can be things like being forgetful, losing things often, not paying attention to details, making careless mistakes, and having difficulty following directions, being emotionally sensitive, lying, and avoiding tasks.
2. ADHD predominantly hyperactive/impulsivity
These traits are often thought of as “classic” ADHD. Including symptoms of fidgeting, getting up out of a chair, running, climbing or moving at inappropriate times, talking too much, blurting out, interrupting, looking like they are on “hyperdrive” all the time, and often need high supervision.