What Is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?
At times, all children have problems paying attention, sitting still, and not interrupting others. However, for a number of children these difficulties continue as they get older, are more extreme than for other children their age, and significantly interfere with their lives. In fact, Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common disorders of childhood worldwide, affecting about 5% of children. Research also shows that 40-60% of these children also struggle with anxiety, depression, learning, and social relationships.
The Three Presentations of ADHD
- Predominately Inattentive Presentation (previously called ADD)
- Predominately Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation (least common)
- Combined Presentation (most common; both inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive)
Research shows that early identification and treatment is essential in preventing ongoing difficulties with learning, mood, self-esteem, and sustaining positive relationships.
How Can We Help? What Is Involved in ADHD Testing?
At Reframe Psychology Clinic, we routinely complete comprehensive ADHD assessments. Assessments are in-depth and look at different areas that a child with ADHD may struggle with, such as their attention, hyperactivity, impulsivity, anxiety, behavior, relationships, and learning. A psychoeducational assessment may also be needed as many students with ADHD also have a learning disability. Information from multiple sources is essential in ADHD testing. Strictly basing an ADHD assessment on a questionnaire completed by parents and a teacher is not enough and is unreliable. Thorough testing allows psychologists to gather enough information to make informed recommendations to parents and teachers about how to maximize a child’s functioning in all areas of their life.
What Are Some Signs of ADHD?
- easily distracted or sidetracked
- difficulties staying focussed for at least 20 minutes
- avoidance of tasks that require sustained mental effort, including homework
- difficulties starting or finishing a task
- difficulties following instructions
- careless errors are common
- seem not to be listening when spoken to
- loss of belongings
- low motivation
- often fidgety or squirmy
- trouble sitting still or staying in seat
- often on the “go” and extremely active
- talk too much
- blurt out answers before questions have been fully asked
- difficulties taking turns
- interrupting others when they are speaking
- difficulties getting along with others
- easily frustrated
- very impatient