Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: Neurologically Based

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a neurologically based disorder.

This position has become controversial as many would like to dismiss the diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder altogether saying that there is no evidence of neurological differences, or that there are no medical tests to diagnose ADD ADHD, or that the diagnostic criteria is too broad. But the fact of the matter is that there are measurable neurological differences, and there are several good tests available to physicians and psychologists, available to diagnose the disorder.

For now we will simply report that there is a tremendous amount of research to support the statement that, indeed, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a neurologically based condition. Much of this information is available at the ADHD Information Library for parents to read over.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, often called ADD or ADHD, is a diagnostic label that we give to children and adults who have significant problems in four main areas of their lives:

Inattention -- people with ADHD are often easily distracted, and have trouble focusing on a task that is only moderately interesting.
Impulsivity -- about 50% of those with ADHD are impulsive, they do or say things without thinking about the consequences first.
Hyperactivity -- about 50% of those with ADHD are hyperactive. This means that they have excessive motor activity that is not directed toward any goal.
Boredom -- people with ADHD are easily bored with mundane activities, like cleaning rooms or doing homework. Tasks must be exciting to capture attention.

Talk to your pediatrician or family practice physician if you think that your child has some of these problems. You can learn more about Attention Deficit Disorder at the ADD ADHD Information Library of NewIdeas.net.

Douglas Cowan, Psy.D., is a family therapist who has been working with ADHD children and their families since 1986. He is the clinical director of the ADHD Information Library's family of seven web sites, including http://www.newideas.net, helping over 350,000 parents and teachers learn more about ADHD each year. Dr. Cowan also serves on the Medical Advisory Board of VAXA International of Tampa, FL., is President of the Board of Directors for KAXL 88.3 FM in central California, and is President of NewIdeas.net Incorporated.

In The News:

Why Psychology Matters  Psychology Today
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Who Was the First Therapy Dog?  Psychology Today
The Neuroscience of Racism  Psychology Today
What You Watch Matters  Psychology Today
Using psychology to boost mental health  People Management Magazine

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