I How many of you know a child who has difficulties to follow instructions, acts impulsively, has trouble staying focused, or blurts out inappropriate comments at the wrong moment? If you recognize these behaviors as yours, let me tell you that you have meet criteria for ADHD diagnose. It sounds easy when you’re talking about other’s children, but when you talk about yourself, believe me it is very disappointed. I am an adult with ADHD and I learned to live with this condition.
II Today I would like to talk about the definition of ADHD and its diagnostic criteria, the resultant behaviors, and treatments that have been proved to be effective to treat this disorder.
Transition: What is ADHD?
I This acronym stands for Attention Deficit /Hyperactivity Disorder. This is a disorder mostly related to individual inability to stay focused on tasks for a period of time, to be easily distracted by environmental stressors, to control the impulse, and/or to behave in a disruptive manner.
A There are four main diagnostic criteria for ADHD according to American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV-TR).
1 “The essential feature of Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder is a persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that is more frequently and more severe than is typically observed in individuals at a comparable level of development (Criterion A).”
2 “Some hyperactive-impulsive or inattentive symptoms that cause impairment must have been present before age 7 years (Criterion B).”
3 “Some impairment from the symptoms must be present in at least two settings (e.g., at home and at school or work) (Criterion C).”
4 “There must be clear evidence of interference with developmentally appropriate social, academic, or occupational functioning (Criterion D).”
Transition: the criterions mentioned above have resultant behaviors that bring gross impairments to function in society for individuals suffering from this condition.
II According to American Psychiatric Association (DSM-IV-TR), there are three main clusters of resultant behaviors related to ADHD.
A Inattention: “Individuals with this disorder fail to give close attention to details or make careless mistakes in school work or other tasks. Individuals often have difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities and often find it hard to persist with task until completion. Individuals often do not follow through on request or instructions. Individuals often have difficulties organizing task and activities. Task that required sustained mental effort is experienced as unpleasant and markedly aversive”.
B Hyperactivity: “Individuals are enabled to remain seated when expected to do so, often showing fidgetiness, squirming in one’s seat, and excessive running or climbing in situations where it is impropriated. Individuals have difficulties playing or engaging quietly activities often appearing “on the go” or as if “driven by a motor.” Individuals often talking excessively and they make excessive noise during quite activities”.
C Impulsivity: “Individuals manifest themselves as impatience, has difficulties taking delaying responses, and often blurting out answers before questions have been completed. Individuals with difficulties to control impulsivity are frequently involved in accidents (e.g., knocking over objects, banging into people) and engage in potentially dangerous activities without consideration of possible consequence”.
Transition: there are some treatments that are effective to treating ADHD
III According to A Guide to Treatments that Work by Peter E. Nathan and Jack A. Gorman, “ Investigation demonstrate that psycostimulants – a group of ethylamine including methylphenidate and amphetamine – are highly effective in reducing core symptoms of childhood attention – deficit / hyperactivity