sense of attention deficit disorder in children
By Dr. Shannon Shi
in any parenting book or healthcare website and you'll find a wealth
of information about attention deficit disorder. And it's no surprise
that so many people are interested in the topic.
million children in the United States are diagnosed with the condition
each year. This number is even more staggering when you consider
this fact: in a classroom of 25 to 30 children, at least one student
will have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
is a very serious condition that is often clouded by denial, misunderstanding,
and alarm. It may impair a child's ability to learn, progress in
school and even function well in his own home. Unfortunately, it
is not always easy to diagnose.
until 1994, the condition was commonly referred to as attention
deficit disorder. However, the diagnostic guidelines were revised
to include hyperactivity along with inattention and impulsivity
as the main characteristics of the condition.
child who has ADHD may exhibit certain behaviors associated with
hyperactivity, inattention and impulsivity. For example, this child
may be very talkative and find it difficult to wait his turn to
speak. He may interrupt others and blurt out answers to questions.
Or, he is unable to sit still and seems to always be on the run.
carelessness, disorganization and lack of focus are other signs
most cases, a child will exhibit symptoms and develop ADHD by age
7. In order for the problem to be considered ADHD, the symptoms
must persist for at least 6 months and severely impact the child's
ability to function normally in at least two settings of his/her
example, a child may not be reaching the developmental milestones
that are typical of his age group in school. She may be acting out
at home and not getting along with siblings.
changes in your child's behavior may be attributed to other medical
conditions and psychosocial situations, and not directly related
to ADHD. For example, if a child who has never shown signs of failing
grades or social problems suddenly begins acting out, the behavior
may be associated with another social issue, such as adjusting to
a divorce, rather than ADHD.
proper treatment and guidance from parents, counselors and teachers,
a child with ADHD can go on to achieve his full potential.
can help their child by establishing and following a daily routine.
Time management and consistent rules are also important as well
as giving praise and small rewards for good behavior.
such as Linden Oaks Hospital at Edward offer evaluations and treatment
for children to address ADHD. Utilizing behavior modification, medication
management and individual therapy, the needs of the whole child
are identified and addressed in a compassionate setting.
you feel that something isn't right with your child, it is important
to seek help as soon as possible. Left untreated, these issues will
further impact family relationships, school success and friendships.
Shannon Shi, a former pediatrician, is now a licensed clinical psychiatrist
with extensive experience in child and adolescent health. Dr. Shi
is on the medical staff of Linden Oaks Hospital at Edward in Naperville,
Oaks Hospital at Edward offers specialized programs including ADHD,
bi-polar disorder, depression, self-injury and eating disorders
for children and adolescents. For more information, please call