Symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is difficult to diagnose because the symptoms are largely influenced by the patient’s environment and can also resemble symptoms of other disorders. Among children, the situation is further complicated because the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder may be difficult to distinguish from normal childhood behavior, such as occasional hyperactivity or inattention.
Thus, diagnosis may be based on clinical symptoms combined with a patient’s overall performance in the classroom or another particular environment. If academic performance is notably below average or an individual’s social life is taking a beating, a daydreaming student may merit closer scrutiny.
Compared to other maladies, parents and teachers may play a major role in diagnosing ADHD. However, only competent medical officials should be trusted to make a final diagnosis.
The principal characteristics of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder are inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, which appear early in a child’s life. A thorough examination by a professional can help determine if such symptoms, which afflict many normal children, are caused by another disorder.
Symptoms of ADHD appear over the course of many months. Symptoms of impulsiveness and hyperactivity often appear first, with inattention emerging a year or more later. Inattentive daydreamers are more likely to be overlooked than hyperactive students who repeatedly disrupt the class.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V), there are three types of behavior that indicate ADHD:
- Consistent inattentiveness
- Hyperactivity and impulsivity that is more than a normal behavior
- All three types of behavior
Thus, professionals recognize three subtypes of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, based on the above symptoms. Sometimes the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder may be appeared by other combined disorders like anxiety, depression, etc.
“Hyperactivity” and “Impulsivity” are the Common Symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Hyperactive children are constantly fidgeting, squirming in their seats, and wiggling their feet, tapping their pencils, roaming around the room or displaying similar behavior. Hyperactive teenagers or adults may feel internally restless. They repeatedly want to do many things at once.
Impulsive patients are lacking in self-restraint or discipline. They are likely to act before they think, speak out inappropriately or display their emotions with abandon. Their impulsivity may translate into an impatience that causes them to grab toys from other children or hit when they’re upset. Their impatience may persist into adulthood.
Below are some specific signs of hyperactivity-impulsivity:
- Restlessness while seated (squirming, fidgeting, tapping feet, etc.)
- Running, jumping or leaving a seat in situations where sitting or quiet behavior is expected
- Response before hearing the complete question
- Having difficulty to wait in line or taking turns.
Children who are inattentive may be able to focus on things they enjoy, but more mundane tasks may be a challenge. Within a few minutes, they may get bored with a task. Thus, they may be constantly left behind in the classroom.
The DSM-V-TR gives these signs of inattention:
- Frequently become diverted by irrelevant sights and sounds
- Frequently fail to pay concentration to details and make careless mistakes
- Rarely follow instructions cautiously and entirely losing or forgetting equipment like toys, pencils, books, and tools required for a task
- Habitually skipping from one unfinished task to another.
Homework is particularly hard for these children—especially if they forget to write down an assignment or leave their assignment or book at school. When they do finish their homework, they may be full of errors and erasures. Obviously, homework isn’t a fun experience for the child or parent.
Unfortunately, children manifesting the Predominantly Inattentive Type of Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder are hard to diagnose and are frequently overlooked because they don’t draw attention to themselves the way hyperactive or impulsive children do. An inattentive child may sit quietly and even appear to be working, even though the child has a hard time understanding a teacher’s instructions. Inattentive children may not even have the same social problems. They are generally characterized as lethargic or “spacey,” rather than hyperactive or disruptive.