What does this list of people have in common?
- Justin Beiber
- Simone Biles
- Jim Carrey
- Ryan Gosling
- Solange Knowles
- Paris Hilton
- Michelle Rodriguez
- Michael Phelps
- Justin Timberlake
If you said that these people are all famous, you would be correct. However, there is another similarity that is not so obvious. Any second guesses? Well, I will give you the answer—they have all been diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder with or without Hyperactivity). While it may seem hard to believe that this short list of people deals with an attention deficit disorder, what is more remarkable is its treatability since each of them has successful careers.
Here are some signs and symptoms to look for:
- failure to give close attention to details
- making careless mistakes
- having difficulty sustaining attention
- appearing not to listen when spoken to
- difficulty with organizing tasks
- losing things
- unable to remain seated when expected
- is often “on the go”
- talks excessively
- blurts out responses before questions are asked
- has trouble awaiting a turn
- often interrupts others
These symptoms are often present in many children at any point and time during their development over the years. However, children with ADHD persistently display these behaviors which impair functioning at school and home.
Note that attention deficit disorder not only impacts the child diagnosed, but also the entire family. A child with ADHD often has challenges in executive functioning which impairs self-control, regulation, flexibility, planning, and working memory. However, there are things that you can do to increase awareness, build support, and attain advocacy for both you, other family members, and your child.
If your child exhibits some of those signs, whether or not there is an “official” ADHD diagnosis, what should you do?
Seek a professional, usually beginning with your child’s pediatrician.
If at some point you are considering treatment or have been referred out, we recommend finding professionals that first determine and explain the root causes of the symptoms and then apply the leading therapies in a caring, nurturing environment.
Whomever you choose, ask the therapists good challenging questions. You require and deserve good answers.
It is critical and often a relief to find out the “why” to your questions of your child’s behaviors, and they are usually if not always treatable.
Finally, consider your crucial role in treatment: Begin with love and understanding and the determination to help your child reach his or her full potential. Keep in mind that in the last few decades we’ve learned vast new information in human developmental neurophysiology and that knowledge continues to grow and refine and most importantly be applied successfully.
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