Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a combination of hyperactivity, inattention, impulsivity and distractibility. Not all four groups have to be present. A child may not be hyperactive, but may be day dreaming more at school. Very often these children are not noticed to be ADD by their teachers and are labelled as learning difficulties.

ADHD is not new. It has been described 100 years ago. Recently it has been established that the predisposition towards ADHD is present at birth, therefore hereditary. There is a small but definite difference in normal brain function which causes the child to underachieve academically, and to behave poorly, in spite of excellent parenting. Early intervention can help to prevent the devastating effects of underachievement, poor self-image and, in the long term, possible delinquent behaviour.

ADHD are usually very intelligent children. But their scholastic achievement is not as good as it could be, because they don’t have capacity to listen consistently to the teacher as she explains a new concept.

These children are often labelled as “naughty”, because they can’t sit still for a minute. They tend to disrupt class.

These children cannot finish their work. Their writing and notebooks are not neat. Some just rush through their work maybe not answering all the questions.

Due to the impulsivity, they always want to be first in a game. They tend to have problems with peers and are not liked.

All of these reasons cause them to lose their self-esteem.

Diet with omega three fatty acids may help, but usually do very little in the ADHD children. One focuses on discipline, routine and smaller classes if possible. But most still need medical help. In this way, we can stop the children from losing their self-worth. They begin to realise that they are not “naughty”. The family dynamics tend to improve and they start to become socially adept and make friends.

The medicine approach does not “change” your child. He should not be a “zombie, just concentrating better. His school work looks neater. He may even be complimented by the teacher, which can really improve self-confidence.