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Is My Child Active or Could it be ADHD


  • Published: 2009-01-01 (Revised/Updated 2014-03-14) : Author: JoAnn Collins
  • Synopsis: Signs to look for to tell if your child may have ADHD symptoms including difficulty following instructions and in organizing tasks.

Are you the parent of a young child who seems to be perpetually moving? Does your child have difficulty attending to tasks? Have you been told by family and friends that your child's behavior is not normal. Are you concerned that your child may have ADHD

This article will discuss 9 symptoms of ADHD, and also give information about a rating scale that can be used to help determine if your child has the disorder.

ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

This disorder has 3 core symptoms which are inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity.

There are an estimated 1 and 1/2 to 2 and 1/2 million children with ADHD in the United States, which is 3-5% of the student population.

More boys than girls are diagnosed with ADHD which is approximately 4-9 times more.

According to the DSM IV ADHD can be defined by the behaviors exhibited. Children and adults have a combination of the following behaviors.

1. Fidgeting with hands or feet or squirming in their seat.

2. Difficulty remaining seated when required to do so.

3. Difficulty sustaining attention and waiting for a turn in tasks, games, or group situations.

4. Blurting out answers to questions before the questions have been completed.

5. Difficulty following through on instructions and in organizing tasks.

6. Shifting from one unfinished activity to another.

7. Failing to give close attention to details and avoiding careless mistakes.

8. Losing things necessary for tasks or activities.

9. Difficulty in listening to others without being distracted or interruption.

10. Lack of interest in peer and family relationships.

11. Little or no eye contact.

12. Difficulty with changes in routine or familiar surroundings.

13. Lack of spontaneous or make believe play, or unusual play with toys and other objects.

14. Repetitive body movements or behavior patterns. Also motor mannerisms such as hand flapping or spinning toys or bottles.

15. Speech delay or communication problems - using and understanding language.A child can have ADD which is Attention Deficit Disorder without the hyperactivity. Those children would have symptoms of inattention and impulsivity but no symptoms of hyperactivity.

If your young child has several of these symptoms over several months, you should bring up the possibility of ADHD with your child's physician. A rating scale is available to help determine if a child has ADHD; the scale is called the Connors -3: Connors Third Edition.

This scale can be given by medical personnel or educational personnel. If your child is three years old and receiving special education services you may ask special education personnel to conduct a Connors Rating Scale. The Connors-3 can be found at: www.proedinc.com.

The reason that it is important to determine if your child has ADHD :

1. Because of the impact ADHD can have on your child's academic success.

2. Because of the impact ADHD can have on your child's school behavior.

3. Because many children with ADHD may have other disabilities; such as learning disabilities, short term memory disorders, sensory integration disorder, anxiety or mood disorders.

The earlier you know that your child has ADHD the earlier that you can begin treatment, watch for other disabilities, and help your child reach academic success!

Reference: JoAnn Collins is the mother of two adults with disabilities. She has been an educational advocate helping hundreds of parents successfully navigate the special education system. She is also the author of the book: Disability Deception; Lies Disability Educators Tell and How to Beat Them at Their Own Game. For more information about parenting a child with a disability go to: www.disabilitydeception.com

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