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Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD - ADHD)

Attention Deficit Disorder - Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD - ADHD) is a prevalent condition in the United States. Recent estimates are that between 4 - 6 percent of the population have behaviors and symptoms that are consistent with the ADD - ADHD diagnosis.
ADD - ADHD is most often diagnosed in males and most often in children.

At one time it was thought that this disorder disappeared and resolved itself at the time of puberty. Now we are aware that although age does seem to help, there are many ADD - ADHD adults. These adult's symptoms did not go away, the children "graduated" and went away from school and were no longer seen as a problem.

Major Issues of ADD - ADHD

There are three major issues that characterize ADD - ADHD:

1. Impulsivity:
To be impulsive is to have difficulty stopping yourself from acting on an urge, or impulse that you may have at any moment in time. Impulsive people "act before they think", when they should "think before they act".

We are all impulsive and young people are more impulsive than adults because they have not learned to "restrain themselves". Impulse control is difficult. It is difficult for all of us, but ADD - ADHD people have more difficulty learning to control their impulses than others.

Impulsive children many times get into trouble at school because they are "acting out" what they are feeling and thinking. An impulsive child will get out of his seat to sharpen his / her pencil, and or blurt out an answer to a question without raising his / her hand, or reach out and touch, push, or hit another child without thinking about the consequences.

With these children consequences seem not to matter. The problem is not that they do not care. Frequently the problem is that they did not think before they acted. They are remorseful yet repeat the behavior time and time again.

2. Attention - Focus - Concentration:
Paying attention, focusing on a topic and concentrating is an important skill for us to have. It is one of the ways we learn. Attending is like focusing the "camera" of our eyes onto a subject and letting the "film of our memory record the information seen". If the "camera" is not focused and or pointed in the direction of the information we are supposed to learn, then our "memory "film" will not be able to record it.

ADD - ADHD folks have difficulty keeping their "camera" focused and pointed on some of information that they are supposed to "record" and learn. Their greatest difficulty is when they are trying to stay focused for a relatively long period of time on a topic that they are not interested in. A.D.D.-ADHD individuals can and do focus and concentrate. They have little difficulty concentrating on subjects that are new and novel, and or subjects that they are very interested in.

Most mothers of ADD - ADHD children will report that their child can stay focused for long periods of time on electronic games.

3. Hyperactivity:
Hyperactivity or the difficulty being still and at rest is the "" in ADHD Hyperactivity is easily seen and is the most obvious symptom in ADD - ADHD Being active and having energy to move about, run and play are gifts that are enjoyed by everyone, especially young people.

We all need to be active. Some of us, however, are so active that our activity causes us to lose out on the enjoyment of what we are involved in. Too much activity does not give us time to absorb and learn from our experiences.

Hyperactive school children have a great deal of difficulty following the expectations of their environment. They can not sit in their chairs and stay quiet and not fidget and not talk, and not make noise, and not bother other people. Consequently, these children end up in trouble with their teachers and can been seen as a "nuisance"

ADD - ADHD Evaluation and Treatment

The good news is that there is much that can be done to assist a person with ADD - ADHD There are many resources and information available regarding the problem. Please visit some of the web sites that we have provided links to below.

The beginning of providing assistance to an individual with ADD - ADHD is to evaluate and diagnose the disorder. Associated Therapists, Inc. provides evaluation and treatment for ADD - ADHD The evaluation is done by qualified professionals with experience and understanding of this issue.

The evaluation consists of personal interviews with the individual (and parents, if it is a child), computer assisted psychological testing, and information gathering from significant sources such as school teachers and physicians. A diagnosis of ADD - ADHD is made only if the individual's problems and symptoms are consistent with criteria established by current medical standards.

If an individual is diagnosed with ADD - ADHD then a individualized treatment plan is recommended. The plan may include recommendations for: medication, individual and or family therapy, school accommodations, special education, tutoring, behavior modification, and parent training. Every person and situation is different, therefore, the recommendations may include all, some, or none of the above.

We do not sell any specific approach nor believe that one must use any of the above interventions to treat ADD - ADHD The recommendations given are NOT influenced by any product or approach that we are selling.

Recommended Reading and Web Resources

Click on the link below for a list of recommended books for information regarding topics that relate to children's issues: ADD - ADHD, Parenting, Discipline and Special Education.
Second link below will direct you to web resources emphasizing ADD - ADHD.

Click Here For Recommended Reading

Click Here For Web Resources

Page written by: Julio J. Guerra, Ph.D.

Please Read is a web site owned and run by Associated Therapists Inc., managed by Julio J. Guerra, Ph.D. All information provided on this site is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient or site visitor and his or her physician or mental health provider. Confidentiality of data relating to individual patients and visitors to this site, including their identity, is respected and will be held by the same standards that govern the requirements of patient confidentiality in the state of California.

 Page last updated: 10/15/11