FAQ - Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity
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What do you think about Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit HyperActivity Disorder?


I am working on a presentation about ADD/ADHD and I need some personal feedback. What do YOU think about this ADD/ADHD phenomenon? Do you think it’s over-diagnosed? Do you think it even exists? Are you diagnosed with it? Can you tell me about some of your struggle?

Any opinion about Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you!
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I am 14 years old and I have ADD.
My elementary years were terrible...i wasn't a behavior problem (most girls aren't) but I couldn't keep my mind on one thing. I fidget all the time... I multi-task and I have a very short attention span. I was diagnosed with ADD last year and at first I was upset. Why LABEL me with this disorder? I found out more about it and it's actually a breath of fresh air to know that that was the reason I couldn't keep many friends (communication problems) and that's why I always felt different.

My older sister has it too...diagnosed when she was 18. She's 27 now. She says that when she makes love, its hard for her to enjoy it because she has so many racing thoughts and that creates relationship problems.  (+ info)

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a growing concern in the United States. How does ADHD diffe?


Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a growing concern in the United States. How does ADHD differ from disruptive behavior disorder? How can these two disorders affect a classroom? Do you believe doctors over-prescribe medication for ADHD? Explain your answer.
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ADHD is a disruptive behavior disorder, disruptive behavior disorder is a broad term used to describe disorders that cause disruptive behavior and one of them is ADHD, others include ODD (oppositional defiance disorder) and CD (conduct disorder).

They affect the classroom in many ways. The child fails to learn and gets in trouble a lot, often frustrating the teacher and distracting others from learning. I do not beleive mediaction is over prescribed as only aroundc 2% of children in the USA are current;y being treated on medication for ADHD.  (+ info)

What are some characteristics of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder?


What are some characteristics of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder?
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Severe trouble focusing, easily side tracked, hyperactivity (sugar rush), racing thoughts, restlessness, insomnia, etc.

Unlike ADD, ADHD is much easier to diagnose, as it is very detrimental to everyday life. Be warned though, a lot of symptoms can be caused by simple stress and depression, and doctors seem to love to prescribe amphetamines to ease these symptoms up. Only use these medications if you cannot function without them! They are horrible for you!  (+ info)

I suffer from a Hyperactivity disorder, but not from deficit of attention. What help could I find for it?


My dad and my brother suffer from ADHD. But I only suffer Hyperactivity, and I don't seem to find information about hyperactive adults with no deficit of attention. Quite the opossite I always need to find myself a new challenge, or task to acomplish, to manage my hyperactivity. Also pretty often I get an excess of energy that seem to be incontrolable for 2 or 3 hours, in which I have to do something physical, and after I released all my energy I feel exhausted, for a couple of days. Most of the times accompanied by super fast heart rate, that has me literally up and running for a few hours. It's really uncomfortable. What kind of condition would this be? Is there any cure? Medicine?
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If you are constantly looking for new challenges to throw yourself into, then you might have a form of ADHD after all. Part of the diagnosis is where you have trouble finding something and sticking with it. It's only thing if you finish your projects, but if some go unfinished, then that's actually classic.

Even if that is not the case, a trip to at least your family physician is in order. The way that you are expending you energy is not normal as most people have a better regulation of how their physical activities are handled. You may need to be referred to a specialist. In any case, get it checked out.

Hope that helps.  (+ info)

Is it possible to treat Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder?


I'm 21 and suffering Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. actually I found that about 3 hours ago when I read somewhere that Phelps, the American Swimmer, suffered that too. I was wondered why I am like that . . .
why I can not DO almost anything right till that I found out about this disorder.
What should I do for that noiw ?
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There are a number of different medications that are very effective for ADHD you should visit your doctor and discuss the options with him/her. Good luck  (+ info)

What sort of treatment is there for attention deficit disorder without hyperactivity?


stimulant medication for raising ability to focus

one on one therapy with a special ed teacher to work on focusing skills and time awareness

utilizing lists, a watch that can be set to beep every 15 min. as a reminder to pay attention, possible use of headphones with relaxing music when focus is needed to block out extraneous noise,

structuring home, school/work envioronment to avoid clutter and disorganization

follow a routine/schedule daily!!!! (VERY important)  (+ info)

If you have ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) can writing in cursive give you a headache?


Hi guys, I am diagnosed with ADHD and whenever I try to write in cursive, I get a horrible hed ache. Eventually i would quit and go back to manuscript. When I do that, my head ache suddenly goes away. Dose this happen to anything with my diagnosis?
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I have ADHD and writing in cursive doesn't give me a headache. It's possible that you are just not very good at writing in cursive, it takes a lot more effort for you to make those letters. The harder you concentrate, the more you tend to tense up the muscles in your neck and forehead, hence the tension headache. Try making a conscious effort to relax your forehead, neck, and shoulders while you're writing in cursive and see if that helps.  (+ info)

What is the revenue generated (monthly) for each ADHD (attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder) diagnosis?


Specifically, what is the monthly cost of the standard drug and therapy regime for each kid that gets this diagnosis?
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varies from child to child, med to med, and insurance to insurance. My son is on medicaid, so it is of no cost to me, but I don;t know that the actual cost is.

ADHD is real, and its sad that so many people think its all a conspiracy.  (+ info)

I heard you can receive an SSI check for a child who has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder?


I am a young mother of a very hyperactive child who is currently being evaluated at his elementary school. I was told about a year ago that I can receive a check for him but I'm not sure about the proper steps to take. I know he has ADD ADHD because I also had/have it.
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Although it is possible, the likelihood that his ADD/ADHD would render him "disabled" (as far as Uncle Sam sees it) is minimal. For him to receive SSI, his condition would have to be debilitating.  (+ info)

What is the most effective way to treat ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder)?


In terms of academic and social performance.
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For parents worried about over-medicating children who have attention problems, behavioral therapy may be a welcome addition to treatment. This type of therapy helps someone with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, alter their behavior and thought patterns to learn how to relate to others and succeed.

In one of the more recent studies, published this May in Experimental and Clinical Psychopharmacology, researchers from the University of Buffalo looked at the benefits of behavioral therapy on 27 children with ADHD between the ages of 6 and 12. They found that behavioral therapy could cut the need for stimulant drugs by up to two-thirds. Moreover, when drugs and behavioral therapy were combined, the two treatments were more effective in controlling ADHD than either used alone.

How does behavioral therapy work? Dr. J. Russell Ramsay, assistant director of the ADHD Research and Treatment Program at the University of Pennsylvania, answers some common questions about this treatment option.


What is behavioral therapy?
Behavioral therapy is a form of psychotherapy that involves an individual or a family sitting in a room with a counselor to talk about the problems that have led the individual to seek help. Unlike traditional forms of therapy, the focus is on the behaviors of the person and what contributes to these behavioral patterns.

How is behavioral therapy used to help somebody with ADHD?
There are a couple different ways that behavioral therapy can work. We know that ADHD shows up differently across the lifespan, therefore, behavioral therapies are used differently for individuals of different age groups.

For example, behavioral therapy for children with ADHD focuses on parent and teacher training, and how they can better understand and manage behaviors. We teach parents and teachers how to guide behaviors. We also work with the family to develop more structured household routines. That way, we can make sure that the patterns used at home are most effective for the ADHD symptoms.

With adolescents, we look at maintaining constructive communication, helping the parents think through the rules of the household. We establish the bedrock rules that the family really wants to establish, and what rules might be a little more negotiable. Some teens may also benefit from additional therapy to address how they think about their emerging identity and the role ADHD plays in that.

Therapy is quite different for adults. Most of the time, an adult's difficulties may have gone undiagnosed earlier in life, so very often we're dealing with an individual who is trying to make sense of a lifetime's worth of frustration. Understandably, these frustrations may have created a negative belief system about how the individual defines himself, his prospects for the future and general attitude about the world. So we have to try to change these negative thoughts, as well as deal with behavioral issues.

What should somebody look for in a therapist?
The term therapist is a wide-ranging term. You could find a psychiatrist, a psychologist, educational psychologist or licensed clinical social worker that has experience in these techniques. First off, be sure that you trust the therapist. Make sure somebody has received adequate training in conducting therapy for people with ADHD.

There are many good professional organizations to help in your search: the Association for the Advancement of Behavioral Therapies (AABT) and the Academy of Cognitive Therapy. They keep a referral base of people trained in cognitive behavioral therapy.


What should a family expect to happen during a therapy session?
Assuming a therapist already confirmed the ADHD diagnosis, they would first look at what the family, child and teachers view as some of the problematic situations. After that, we get down to what we are going to do about it.

For example, if the student is having trouble sitting still, we define the problem and try to describe what happens to cause the problem. We try to flesh out the scene so we can understand what can be modified to get the behavior moving in the right direction. For example, if the teacher likes to have students sit in alphabetical order in the classroom, perhaps a child with ADHD would do better sitting near the teacher's desk. So, even though the child's last name might have required him or her to sit towards the back of the class, we can tweak these rules based on the child's situation.

Why does a family need to get the teacher involved?
Behavioral therapists recognize that only so much happens in a weekly, hour-long session, and that they can't be present for the remaining 167 hours in that week. So, if there is collaboration among all interested parties things can be more productive. The therapist might consult with the teacher and work on what can be changed in the classroom to accommodate the child.

How is therapy monitored?
Unlike traditional therapies, behavioral therapies monitor whether the plan is working in concrete ways. We use a behavioral criteria, like the number of times the child gets out of his seat during class, to measure the success of the plan. If the plan works we can then work to maintain the positive results. If something's not working about the plan, we look to see if there were any unanticipated problems. Perhaps it wasn't a realistic plan, and we have to move on to plan B.

Does any of the responsibility to change fall on the child?
Progressively, more responsibility is taken on by the child as he or she gets older. But even younger children can help keep track of things, and the therapist often works with the child to come up with a reminder system about how to handle certain situations.

For example, kids with ADD might forget to raise their hand in class, so perhaps the therapist talks with the child about what might be a helpful reminder. Perhaps there's a little picture of a child raising his or her hand that can be taped to the child's desk as a reminder. A therapist may engage the child to find ways to keep track of when homework assignments are due. There's a lot of ways children with ADHD can be empowered to gain control over their behavior. The key is not to ask too little and risk having the child become overly dependent on other people, and not to ask too much and risk having them overwhelmed by the responsibility. So, this is where the behavioral therapies are very collaborative, checking in with each other about the process to see how things are progressing.

What is behavior modification?
Behavior modification is one aspect of behavioral therapy. It looks at different ways of shaping behaviors by introducing a positive reinforcement for a desired behavior. For example, every time the child has spent 30 minutes doing his or her homework, they get a point. Over time, the points add up and the child will receive a prize.

Behavior modification can also work by matching a less-desirable behavior with a desirable one. A child may work with a friend on a more difficult topic that the child would typically avoid. This way it becomes less negative, and the child can learn mastery on the task.


What is the role of medications with behavioral therapy?
The issue of medications is often a very personal one. Sometimes people might be reluctant to take them for a host of different reasons: maybe they don't identify as somebody who's really a medication taker, and they're skeptical of the effects. In that case, there might be certain incorrect beliefs about the medications that a therapist can work on with the individual.

Other times, we'll hear beliefs like, "If I take the medications while I'm doing my work, I don't know if it's really me doing it. How much is me, and how much is the medications?" Even though behavioral therapy is very outcome focused, we don't turn a blind eye to some of these identity issues. We can look to see if there are ways that misinformation is affecting this person's choice about their medication compliance.

We certainly respect the right of self-determination and some people do make an informed decision to not take medication. So, in this case, we could have a discussion on their willingness to engage in therapy to make changes.

Can behavioral therapy serve as a substitute for medication?
That's not really been well researched. One study looked at medications alone and medications combined with behavior therapy and showed about equal effectiveness.

However, some people choose to augment the medication therapy with behavioral therapy, particularly if they feel that certain issues have not been addressed by medication alone. I have worked with some people with relatively mild or low ADHD who did not want to take medications. They tried cognitive behavioral therapy first and felt like they had a successful therapy experience under those conditions.

How long does it take behavioral therapy to start working?
It's very individualized, because some people may come in as an adult newly diagnosed and are ready for change. Other people might be more ambivalent about the prospect of change. But that's part of the treatment. We personalize this behavioral model to each person, taking a look at individual difficulties.

What is the ultimate goal of behavioral therapy?
The end goal of behavior therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy is to make the therapist obsolete by imparting coping skills and helping the individual become better versed in why they do what they do. This way, the individual, the family and the teacher can together take control of the management of ADHD in the long run.  (+ info)

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