Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is often diagnosed during childhood and usually characterized by difficulties regulating attention, controlling impulsivity and hyperactivity. About 10% of children and 4% of adults can be affected by the symptoms of ADHD.
Unfortunately, the symptoms of this neurodevelopmental (brain-based) disorder can often be mistaken for “acting out,” temper tantrums, poor parenting and laziness. This can potentially lead to lack of help and additional developmental troubles.
Rice Psychology Group is devoted to understanding what’s going on beneath the surface with children and adults and wants you to be able to recognize the symptoms of ADHD as easily and early as possible.
At Rice Psychology Group, we know that the effects of ADHD can affect the lives of adults, adolescents and children, but you don’t have to find the solution on your own.
Recognizing the Types of ADHD
People with ADHD often experience problems with executive functioning, which can be troublesome when attempting to plan, organize and complete any given task. ADHD is additionally known to impact a person’s attention, emotional responses, behavior and judgement.
Generally, psychologists classify the symptoms of ADHD into three different types:
- Predominantly inattentive presentation – This type was previously known as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). Individuals with this type of ADHD tend to have difficulty with paying attention to the right things, at the right time, for the right amount of time and at the right level. They can be easily distracted by either their own thoughts or things going on around them. Children with this type of deficit disorder are not overly active and tend to not disrupt classrooms or other activities. This can lead to their disorder not being easily noticed.
- Predominantly hyperactive impulsive presentation – Children who experience this type of ADHD may have somewhat less difficulty with attention, however, they will exhibit hyperactive and impulsive behavior. They seem to always be “on the go” and have significant difficulty regulating their behavior.
- Combined type presentation – This is generally considered the most common form of ADHD. Children who have it show significant symptoms of both types described above.
Reading the Signs
It’s important to recognize that in some people, the signs of ADHD are evident as early as pregnancy with an extremely active baby. For others, the signs of ADHD may not be evident to observers or the individual until much later in life. Additionally, ADHD symptoms often do not cause problems until a child begins to experience the demands of school.
In order for a diagnosis to be made, the problems attributed to ADHD must be seen in at least two settings such as work, school, home and socially, and need to be present prior to age 12. If ADHD is diagnosed in adults, it is usually possible to trace the problems back to childhood. The symptoms of ADHD can be numerous and are organized into three categories:
- A short or inconsistent attention span
- Trouble listening and following directions
- Difficulty with motivation and sustained levels of effort
- Easily distracted
- Memory troubles (forgetfulness)
- Making careless errors
- Lack of or weak organizational skills relative to age
- Lack of or weak study skills relative to age
- Constant interruption of others
- Trouble with waiting for their turn in the classroom or playground setting
- Shouting out answers before being called upon
- Taking risks often and without thinking
- Constantly running, climbing and jumping, often with no objective other than to move around
- Trouble remaining in their place when instructed to
- Constant fidgeting
- Excessive talking
- Experiencing trouble when expected to remain silent
- Often losing or forgetting material things
- Shifting from task to task without completing any of them
- Tends to decrease with age
Let Us Find a Way to Help
Whether you’re currently experiencing the signs of ADHD or if you think your child may be troubled by the symptoms of this disorder, know that Rice Psychology Group is here and ready to help. Our team of Tampa-based psychologists will evaluate you, your adolescent or child in a comfortable and relaxing setting designed to help you feel at ease. Our job is to ensure that you and your loved ones find the best solution and take the first step towards feeling better. For more information, call any one of our locations in Tampa today.