Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Peter Brown

ADHD is defined as a persistent pattern of inattentive behaviour and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that is more frequent and severe than is typically observed in individuals of the same developmental level.

Children and adolescents with inattentive behaviour problems make careless mistakes with school work, find it hard to persist with tasks and are easily distracted. Those with problems in the area of hyperactivity/impulsivity often fidget and talk excessively, interrupt others, and are constantly ‘on the go’.

There are three subtypes of ADHD based on the predominant symptom patternĀ for the past 6 months.

  • Children and adolescents with symptoms of both inattentiveness and hyperactivity-impulsivity are diagnosed with ADHD, Combined Type;
  • Those with primarily inattentive symptoms are diagnosed with ADHD, Predominantly Inattentive Type;
  • Those with primarily hyperactivity-impulsivity symptoms are diagnosed with ADHD, Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsivity Type.

Where to start to get help:

  • Start with your family GP or a clinical psychologist who specialises in child mental health issues
  • You will probably be referred to a paediatrician or child psychiatrist for further assessment

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