When your child can’t seem to sit still, or they never seem to pay attention, they may have attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), a neurological disorder that affects about 9% of children aged 2-17 years. The experienced pediatricians at Eastside Children’s Clinic in Allen, Texas, have diagnosed and treated many children with ADHD, helping them overcome their challenges and find success in life. If your child needs support, schedule an ADHD evaluation by calling the office or using the online booking feature.
Children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD have differences in their brains than those who don’t have ADHD. Certain areas of their brain may mature more slowly. Additionally, children with ADHD have imbalances in neural networks and neurotransmitters, the chemicals that nerves use to communicate.
Knowing that ADHD has a neurological basis is important because it helps parents understand that their child isn’t disobedient or oppositional on purpose. Instead, children with ADHD need help to learn to control their behavior.
The brain differences are also important because they occur in specific areas responsible for skills such as self-regulation, organization, working memory, problem-solving, reasoning, and time perception. The brain areas affected determine your child’s ADHD symptoms.
ADHD symptoms fall into three categories: inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. Some children may only struggle with inattention, while others have trouble with two or three categories.
Each child has a different range and severity of symptoms. However, their symptoms are severe enough to affect their performance at school, at home, and when socializing.
When children struggle with inattention, they:
When children struggle with hyperactivity and impulsivity, they:
Children and adolescents with ADHD also have problems with working memory. Working memory allows them to hold several pieces of information in their head long enough to use them to plan, do calculations, or to coordinate one activity with another.
To evaluate and diagnose ADHD, Eastside Children’s Clinic uses tools such as a checklist of symptoms, talking with parents and children about their challenges, and questionnaires completed by parents and teachers. Your child also has a thorough physical exam to be sure another problem is not the cause of their symptoms.
Once your child has an ADHD diagnosis, their pediatrician at Eastside Children’s Clinic prescribes treatment and schedules regular follow-up appointments to monitor their progress.
Your pediatrician may recommend conventional and/or holistic treatments, depending on each child’s needs. For example, your child may improve with a combination of medication, dietary changes, and behavioral support.
If you or your child’s teacher are concerned about your child’s inattentive, hyperactive, or impulsive behaviors, call Eastside Children’s Clinic or schedule an ADHD evaluation online today.