WHAT IS ATTENTION DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER (ADHD)? SYMPTOMS AND TREATMENT

Attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is caused by chemical, structural and communication problems in the brain; It is a neurodevelopmental disorder defined as being easily distracted, having concentration problems, and the inability to properly perform important functions including social skills such as memory and motivation. (DSM-5 APA, 2013)

Sep 19, 2023 - 15:37
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WHAT IS ATTENTION DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER (ADHD)? SYMPTOMS AND TREATMENT
WHAT IS ATTENTION DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER (ADHD)? SYMPTOMS AND TREATMENT

WHAT IS ADHD?

Attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is caused by chemical, structural and communication problems in the brain; It is a neurodevelopmental disorder defined as being easily distracted, having concentration problems, and the inability to properly perform important functions including social skills such as memory and motivation. (DSM-5 APA, 2013)

ADHD is a disorder that begins in childhood and can spread its effects throughout life. Although ADHD is more common in children, it is also seen in adults; statistically ADHD; It has been reported that it is seen in 8% in childhood, 6% in adolescence and 4% in adulthood. ADHD may not go away completely, but the frequency of symptoms can be minimized. The decrease in the incidence of ADHD with increasing age actually indicates a decrease in the symptoms of the disorder. Research on this subject shows that symptoms decrease with age, or people with ADHD may be learning to live this way.

ADHD DIAGNOSIS AND SYMPTOMS

According to DSM 5, certain criteria must be met to diagnose ADHD. DSM 5 book examines ADHD separately under 3 headings:

1- Inattention deficit (Primary inattentive type)

2- Hyperactive-Impulsive (Predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type)

3- Attention deficit & Hyperactive-impulsive (Combined type)

 

According to DSM 5, in order to diagnose whether someone has ADHD, children must have 6 or more symptoms and at least 5 symptoms after the age of 17. (DSM 5 APA, 2013)

In DSM 5, ADHD findings are stated as follows:

 

1- Symptoms of Attention Deficit

  • Symptoms of attention deficit are as follows: A distracted person has problems maintaining attention, that is, focusing, does not seem to listen to what is said to him, has difficulty doing things that someone asks him to do, has problems organizing, avoids tasks that require a lot of thinking, frequently loses things or puts things away. He forgets the place, has difficulty in carrying out his daily tasks and is not very detail-oriented, does his work superficially and therefore constantly makes mistakes.

2-Hyperactivity-impulsivity symptoms

  • A hyperactive-impulsive person cannot stand still, cannot stand still, his hands and feet are constantly in motion, he has problems sitting for long periods of time, he has trouble doing something silently, he is very active, he talks too much, he is very impatient when listening to the other person's question. He answers before finishing, has problems in situations where he has to wait or stand in line, interrupts the conversation to start the conversation as soon as possible.


3-Attention deficit & hyperactive-impulsive (combined type)

  • Symptoms in both groups above may occur together.

 

In addition to general problems, children diagnosed with ADHD also experience other symptoms. They often experience deficits in cognitive processing speed and difficulty with handwriting and visual-motor skills, which are indicative of mild neurological impairment (Mayes and Calhoun, 2007). In addition, low academic achievement is also observed in children. Children diagnosed with ADHD have difficulties among their friends and making friends (Hinshaw & Melnick, 1995). They are more likely to be injured by a fall, get hit by a car, or get stomach poisoning because their symptoms cause them to take more risks or ignore safety precautions (Daley, 2006).

Approximately half of them experience sleep problems, especially trouble falling and staying asleep, resisting bedtime, and waking up in the morning (Weiss and Salpekar, 2010).

FACTORS CAUSING ADHD

There are many factors that cause ADHD. The most basic of these is the 'genetic' factor. Genetic transmission is between 60 and 90 percent (Kent, 2004). When parents have ADHD, there is a 50 percent chance that their children will be diagnosed with ADHD (Biederman et al., 1995). ADHD occurs as a result of many genes, the interaction of these genes, and gene-environment interaction. Other factors that cause ADHD can be listed as follows;

  • Brain damage from trauma, stroke

  • Low birth weight and birth complications

  • Environmental factors exposed in the womb or at a young age

  • It is in the form of alcohol and tobacco use during pregnancy.

HOW IS ADHD TREATED?

ADHD is treated with medication and therapy. Some side effects may be possible in drug treatment, and the benefits of drugs are only seen when used, so attention is paid to long-term treatment. Therapies are psychotherapy and psychosocial therapy. The therapist detects the patient's symptoms and decides on the path to follow accordingly. ADHD can also be treated with a combination of medication and psychotherapy, including stimulant medications.

SOURCE

 

  • Turkish Psychiatric Association. Access addresshttps://psikiyatri.org.tr/halka-yonelik/33/eriskin-dikkat-eksikligi-ve-hiperaktivite-bozuklugu

  • DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders): The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, published by the American Psychiatric Association and determining the criteria for diagnosing mental illnesses.

  • Book of Case Studies in Abnormal Psychology

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Melike Yavuz Merhaba ben Melike Yavuz. Ankara Yıldırım Beyazıt Üniversitesi Psikoloji bölümünde 3.sınıf öğrencisiyim. Bir süredir okuduğum, öğrendiğim ve ilgi duyduğum alanlardan oluşan makalelerimi Sayedra Psikoloji Blog'ta paylaşıyorum.