Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a neurologic condition that causes a person to have trouble with focusing, self-regulation, and impulsivity. According to a 2016 survey by the Center for Disease Control, over 6 million children ages 2-17 have been diagnosed with ADHD. Because this condition is so common, there are many treatments available. However, occupational therapy has shown to be an effective non-medication-based option for children and adults alike.
Receiving an ADHD Diagnosis
A person usually receives an ADHD diagnosis during childhood. Symptoms of ADHD include:
- Trouble focusing
- Difficulty multitasking
- Poor planning skills
- Easily irritated or frustrated
- Difficulty with time management skills
- Trouble with prioritizing tasks
While not all children will display these symptoms, some of the most noticeable ones are often detected when a child starts school by their teachers or caregivers. Currently, there is no single diagnostic test that can diagnose ADHD. Mental health professionals often do a thorough examination of both physical and mental health, as well as looking at academic performance. Things like grades, class involvement, and interactions with peers can help professionals determine whether or not a child is experiencing difficulties that could be caused by ADHD.
It is possible to receive an ADHD diagnosis in adulthood, although it is less common. As a person ages, the disorder can manifest in different ways than it did in childhood. Some examples of adult ADHD symptoms are:
- Being unable to focus during driving or reckless driving
- Trouble with organization
- Difficulty starting and finishing tasks
- Being late for things
- Having angry outbursts
In both children and adults, boys are more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than girls.
Causes of ADHD
Although many researchers have tried to figure out what exactly causes ADHD, no concrete answer has been found. Genetics does put a person at higher risk of developing the condition. In fact, if a child’s parent has ADHD, there is a 25% chance that they will be diagnosed as well. Things like traumatic brain injuries are another potential cause. A person’s natural brain structure can also be a reason that someone is more apt to develop ADHD, with some areas being smaller in those with the condition.
There are a lot of myths about what can cause ADHD, unfortunately. Scientists have eliminated sugar, allergies, vaccines, and chemicals as a cause of developing ADHD.
Intervention With Theradynamics
Occupational therapy (OT) can help people with ADHD with concentration, processing speed, motor control and coordination, and more. Children can especially benefit from OT, helping them to establish healthy routines and behaviors as they grow. At Theradynamics, our occupational therapists can work with you or a loved one to improve symptoms of ADHD and your overall mental and physical health.
Finding occupational therapy in Manhattan can be a challenge. However, not with us! With additional locations in Queens, New Jersey, and the Bronx, getting access to quality occupational therapy and care is easy.