ADHD or something else?
Teens with symptoms of inattention often have a type of ADHD that goes undiagnosed and untreated. They may sit quietly and get along well with others, but struggle to focus and perform at school. Similarly, teens with hyperactive and impulsive forms of ADHD may go undetected because adults assume that they have emotional or behavioral problems.
ADHD often occurs alongside other disorders. For this reason, teens with ADHD may also exhibit symptoms of other problems, such as anxiety disorders, oppositional defiant disorder, substance abuse and learning disabilities. Research shows that teens with ADHD are more than twice as likely to have a car accident as teens without ADHD. They are also more likely to abuse alcohol and other drugs.
How do doctors know if a child or teen has ADHD?
There is no one medical or physical test that tells if someone has ADHD. Usually, a parent, teacher, or other adult tells the doctor about the behaviors they see. Your pediatrician or family doctor may suggest you take your child to see a qualified specialist with training and expertise in childhood development and mental health disorders.
Sometimes a child may have ADHD at the same time as other problems, such as anxiety, a learning disability, oppositional defiant disorder (a condition where children or teens argue, talk back, disobey, and defy parents, problems that might explain your child’s symptoms.
How common is ADHD?
- ADHD is now found more often in preschool children, teens, and adults than in the past.
- About 5 percent of children worldwide show signs of inattention and hyperactivity.
- About twice as many boys have ADHD as girls.
- ADHD affects children of all races and social classes.
Early detection and treatment are critical in addressing ADHD symptoms and preventing problems such as depression, anxiety, low self-esteem and substance abuse.
There is no cure for ADHD, but there are many treatment options. What works for some may not work for all. For most teens, a combination of medication (such as Ritalin, Adderall and Concerta) and behavioral therapy will be the most effective.
Behavioral interventions that help teens manage their ADHD symptoms, for examples may include:
- ADHD Summer Camps
- ADHD Schools
- Individual, Group and Family Counseling
Specialized ADHD summer camps and ADHD schools provide structured routines and individualized education plans tailored to each student’s learning style as well as social skills training and counseling. Through hands-on lessons and positive reinforcement, teens learn practical skills to stay organized, complete tasks and manage their ADHD symptoms. Small class sizes and plenty of one-on-one attention provide teens with the support they need to excel at school and at home.
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