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Hyperactivity (continuous movement and greater than expected for the child's age), inattention and impulsivity are the main characteristics of the Attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity (ADHD). It is one of the most frequent causes of school failure and social problems in childhood. It is a chronic pathology, with a high genetic component (in 75 percent of cases, the cause is genetic), but it can be diagnosed and treated.
This conduct disorder, of neurobiological origin, is the most common during childhood. It is estimated that 5 percent of the child and youth population, between 3 and 16 years old, suffer it, being about three times more frequent in men. It is a disorder that occurs due to an alteration of the central nervous system.
Children with ADHD exhibit inappropriate behavior for their age. It costs them and makes it difficult:
- Control their behavior.
- Control your emotions and thoughts.
- To concentrate.
- They have great difficulty paying attention.
However, not all children experience all symptoms at the same time. Although the most common is the combined type, there are children who have only one of the two disorders. The hereditary factor influences their development, with 44 percent of children who have had hyperactive fathers or mothers suffer the problem.
Many parents and teachers find it difficult to identify if the child is a carrier of ADHD or if what is lacking are limits, since children in these states often have similar symptoms. In the case of ADHD, the child has symptoms such as:
- Restlessness. Move feet, hands, and body without a clear goal. He gets up, jumps and runs when he has to be seated.
- Low self-esteem. His behavior is inappropriate and he receives frequent punishments. Among his peers he is not an easy playmate and he becomes unpopular. They move away from the hyperactive child and cause low self-esteem.
- Excessive and uncontrollable boredom and excitement. He cannot play in a calm way. Does not respect the turn of others. He is often excited and bored.
- Accentuated degree of impulsivity. Act before you think. Answer before the question is finished.
- Lack of concentration. He does not attend to the details, nor to the organization, nor to the instructions.
- Lack of persistence. In addition to not finishing tasks, avoid those that require continued effort.
- Difficulty organizing and keep the focus.
- Distraction very easily. You forget what you have to do.
- Fictitious deafness. Sometimes they don't seem to listen. It is a consequence of your inattention.
ADHD is a little known pathology, difficult to detect and easy to confuse. The neurological complication is unleashed in ages between 3 and 4 years, reaching the most critical state at 6 years of age.
Specialists point out that children with hyperactivity not treated on time will have problems in adolescence, will suffer problems to relate and even suffer school failure. However, continued treatment, as the child grows, will allow the disorder to improve and even to be controlled.
The great difficulty that children present in attending, selecting, maintaining, and controlling their attention to the stimuli that are presented to them, as well as the excessive agitation they present, justify the need for help and professional treatment and monitoring.
A specialist will help the child to acquire habits and cognitive strategies so that their social, family and school development is at the level of their abilities. The treatment aims to:
- Improve or cancel the symptoms of the disorder
- Reduce or eliminate associated symptoms
- Improve learning, language, writing, social and family relationships.
For this, the specialist will use, as appropriate, all the means at his disposal to provide comprehensive information to parents and teachers, drug treatment (essential in 7 out of 10 children), and psycho-pedagogical treatment.
It should not be forgotten that parents play a fundamental role during treatment. Hyperactive children will need a lot of support, understanding, love and, above all, a lot of patience so that little by little they manage to develop their day to day normally.
- Hyperactivity disorder.com
- University Clinic of Navarra
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