Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Posted on February 5, 2019 at 2:20 pm

There are a number of young people and adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, otherwise known as ADHD, and the numbers are only increasing, which has an impact on their home life, learning, work and friendships. Some people feel they just can’t relax, their head/body is always busy and racing, difficulty with attention/concentration etc.

ADHD Symptoms

The cardinal features are impaired attention and over-activity, which are evident in more than one  situation (home, classroom, clinic). The difficulties are evident from an early age (before age 6 years) and of long duration. There are usually symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity which include:

  • Often failing to give close attention to detail and making mistakes.
  • Often has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or activities.
  • Often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly.
  • Often does not follow through on instructions and leaves tasks unfinished.
  • Often has difficulty organising tasks.
  • Often avoids or dislikes engaging in tasks requiring sustained mental effort.
  • Often loses things.
  • Is easily distracted.
  • Often fidgets or squirms.
  • Often leaves seat repeatedly when remaining seated is expected.
  • Often runs and climbs in situations where it is inappropriate.
  • Often unable to play or engage in activities quietly.
  • Is often ‘on the go’.
  • Often talks excessively.
  • Often blurts out answers before the question is completed.
  • Often has difficulty awaiting turns.

The above symptoms have to be taken into context with developmental age and the environment. The diagnosis is made by a specialist, usually a Psychiatrist with training and experience in ADHD. There are usually some psychometric questionnaires which will assist in the assessment which include Conner’s rating scales, Vanderbilt assessment scales and SNAP-IV Parent and Teacher Rating Scales. Sometimes, a school observation may also be necessary along with assessment in the clinic.

ADHD Treatment

Once a diagnosis is made, the specialist will communicate this to the individual, family and school/work, if appropriate. There are also additional resources such as www.livingwith,,, with some useful information.

The treatments include psycho-education with some simple adaptations to home, school and work environments and expectations through behavioural strategies (e.g. breaking down tasks into single instruction), parent and/or individual behavioural training through ADHD behavioural training workshops, ADHD support groups etc.

Adaptations in life style and diet also have a beneficial impact such as short term elimination diet if there are food intolerances/ allergies, limiting sugar intake etc. In some cases, medications may be needed such as stimulant (Methylphenidate) medications, Atomoxetine etc. There are specific botanicals such as Ashwagandha which can have beneficial effect on focus and concentration. Many of these individuals also have nutritional deficiencies/insufficiencies (e.g Vitamin D. Magnesium, Zinc, Essential Fatty Acids) and using high quality supplements and quality foods will all assist in correcting the symptoms and improving functioning.

Call today for consultation on 01604 432966 or make an appointment.