Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. EDU381 Immaculata University Matthew Speicher 6/2/10. Recent Changes in Definition.
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For many years, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) used the term attention deficit disorder (ADD) to refer to all people with the condition, but it allowed for subtypes of ADD with and without hyperactivity.
Recent changes to the DSM have begun using the general term attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) to refer to all people with the condition. However, ADHD is now divided into the following subtypes:
Diagnosing ADHD can be tricky (especially when taking the three subtypes of the disorder into account), so most authorities stress the use of several sources of information before arriving at a firm diagnosis. These sources include:
Myth: ADHD is primarily the result of minimal brain injury.
Fact: In most cases of ADHD, there is no evidence of actual damage to the brain.
Myth: Social problems of students with ADHD are due to their not knowing how to interact socially.
Fact: Most people with ADHD know how to interact, but their problems with behavioral inhibition make it difficult to utilize socially appropriate behaviors.
Myth: ADHD is primarily a U.S. phenomenon, due to our society’s emphasis on achievement and conformity.
Fact: Evidence strongly suggests that prevalence rates of ADHD are at least as high in the following countries (among others) as they are in the United States: Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Germany, Japan, China, Brazil, and the Netherlands.
Fact: ADHD is widely recognized as one of the most frequent reasons children are referred for behavioral problems to guidance clinics. 30% - 50% of cases referred to guidance clinics are for ADHD.
Fact: Most authorities estimate that between 3% and 7% of all school-age children have ADHD.
Fact: ADHD is much more prevalent in boys than girls. Authorities estimate that ADHD affects boys at a rate of 3:1 in comparison to girls. Some gender bias in referral may exist, and it has been noted that boys are more likely to exhibit the more highly noticeable behaviors associated with ADHD, but current research suggests that these factors are not enough to account for the wide disparity in prevalence rates between boys and girls.
Schedule: Keep the same routine every day, from wake-up time to bedtime. Include time for homework, outdoor play, and indoor activities. Keep the schedule on the refrigerator or on a bulletin board in the kitchen. Write changes on the schedule as far in advance as possible.
Organize everyday items: Have a place for everything, and keep everything in its place. This includes clothing, backpacks, and toys.
Use homework and notebook organizers: Use organizers for school material and supplies. Stress to your child the importance of writing down assignments and bringing home the necessary books.
Be clear and consistent: Children with ADHD need consistent rules they can understand and follow.
Give praise or rewards when rules are followed: Children with ADHD often receive and expect criticism. Look for good behavior, and praise it.