ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)

ADHD is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders of childhood. It is usually first diagnosed in childhood before the age of 6 and often lasts into adulthood. They occur in more than one situation, such as at home and at school.

The symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can be categorised into 2 types of behavioural problems -

  • Inattentiveness (difficulty concentrating and focusing)
  • Hyperactivity and impulsiveness

Children may have symptoms of both inattentiveness and hyperactivity and impulsiveness, or they may have symptoms of just 1 of these types of behaviour.

Inattentiveness (difficulty concentrating and focusing)

The main signs of inattentiveness are:

  • having a short attention span and being easily distracted
  • making careless mistakes – for example, in schoolwork
  • appearing forgetful or losing things
  • being unable to stick to tasks that are tedious or time-consuming
  • appearing to be unable to listen to or carry out instructions
  • constantly changing activity or task
  • having difficulty organising tasks

Hyperactivity and Impulsiveness

The main signs of hyperactivity and impulsiveness are:

  • being unable to sit still, especially in calm or quiet surroundings
  • constantly fidgeting
  • being unable to concentrate on tasks
  • excessive physical movement
  • excessive talking
  • being unable to wait their turn
  • acting without thinking
  • interrupting conversations
  • little or no sense of danger

These symptoms can cause significant problems in a child's life, such as underachievement at school, poor social interaction with other children and adults, and problems with discipline.

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