What is Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

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What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is mainly a mental disorder of the neurodevelopmental type.

ADHD is a disorder that makes it difficult for a person to control impulsive behaviors and pay attention. He/he may also be restless and almost constantly active.

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Symptoms of ADHD begin in childhood but ADHD can continue through adolescence and adulthood.

What Causes Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

Several researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) and across the globe are studying the causes of ADHD.

The current study suggests that ADHD may be due to interactions between genes and environmental or non-genetic factors.

There are several factors that initiate ADHD including;

  • Genes
  • Cigarette smoking,
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Using drugs during pregnancy
  • Exposure to environmental toxins like high levels of lead.
  • Low birth weight

People with ADHD also show different types of symptoms such as;

  • Difficulty in paying attention inattention
  • Being overactive or hyperactivity
  • Acting without thinking or impulsivity
  • Brain injuries

Signs of impulsivity and hyperactivity may include:

  • Squirming and fidgeting while seated.
  • Getting up and moving around in situations when staying seated is expected like in the office or classroom.
  • Running, dashing or climbing in situations where it is inappropriate.
  • Being unable to engage or play in hobbies quietly
  • Blurting out answers before questions have been completed, or speaking without waiting for a turn in the conversation.
  •  Intruding or interrupting on others like in conversations, activities, or games.

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Treatments for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

There are several treatments available that help in reducing symptoms and improving functioning;


ADHD medications reduce impulsivity and hyperactivity that improve ADHD people abilities for focus, work, and learn.

Antidepressants: Antidepressants are not approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for treating ADHD, but antidepressants are used to treat adults with ADHD.

Older antidepressants or tricyclics affects the brain chemicals norepinephrine and dopamine.


There are the different types of therapy which are helpful for ADHD, but studies show that therapy may not be effective in treating symptoms of ADHD.

Therapy to an ADHD treatment may help patients and families better cope with daily challenges and activities.

Parents and teachers can help children and teenagers with ADHD stay organized and follow directions with tools like keeping a schedule and a routine, organizing everyday things, using notebook and homework organizers.

For Adults: A licensed mental health personnel or therapist can help adults with ADHD in learning how to organize his/her life with tools like keeping routines and breaking down bigger tasks into smaller and more manageable tasks.

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