Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is one of the common chronic disorders in children. ADHD affects approximately 3 to 7 percent of the school-age population. Children affected by attention deficit hyperactivity disorder often begin to show the symptoms before the age of 7. This disorder is a developmental disorder and a neurobehavioral disorder. The disorder is characterized by three main symptoms- impulsive tendency, hyperactive behavior and inability to concentrate. These symptoms may vary in severity and intensity as per the individuals. Accordingly attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is classified into three main types. These are mentioned below:
Type 1: Predominantly hyperactive type
The children that fall into the type 1 category of attention deficit disorder show more symptoms of hyperactive impulsive behavior as compared to the symptoms of inability to concentrate. Symptoms of hyperactive behavior first appear by the age of 4 years. The hyperactive behavior becomes more evident by the age of 7 years.
Type 2: Predominantly inattentive type
In this type of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder the major characteristic symptom is inability to concentrate or lack of attention. The symptoms of hyperactive and impulsive behavior as present as well but in lesser degree. Symptoms of concentration difficulties are more evident by the age of 7 years.
Type 3: Combined type of hyperactive and inattentive behavior
Some individuals display both the characteristic symptoms of impulsive and hyperactive behavior along with concentration problems. In this type of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder both the symptoms co-exist at a similar level.
Children with ADHD
Children suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder often cause problems in school because of their hyperactive behavior. They are more prone to be involved in accidents and small mishaps as a result of their impulsive tendency. They often lack behind in the completion of school homework and assignments. They are extremely impulsive and impatient. They are fidgety and restless. Parents, teachers and care givers often find it difficult to control their behavior. Their inability to concentrate makes it difficult for them to pay attention at school. As a result of this they often show a poor academic performance. They move around constantly, touching things, playing with anything around them and dashing around. They have a tendency to daydream and get confused easily. They speak inappropriate words at times and have a tendency to blurt out things. They have difficulty in following instructions due to their inability to concentrate. As a result they are often termed as rude and impolite. They tend to forget things and as result lose their things easily.
Children affected by this disorder often feel left out in school and among peers. They are unable to indulge in sports and other activities and may suffer from a low self esteem. Some children suffering from this disorder also have associated symptoms such as anxiety and depression. So it may become difficult to diagnose the disorder. In a majority of cases of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder the symptoms continue well into adolescence. But with proper treatment and counseling the child can be taught coping skills.