Thursday, April 11, 2013

Conquering ADHD Part I: What is ADHD?

The diagnosis and treatment of ADHD is a multistep process and involves the close collaboration of many different people. In over 10 years of my practice I have seen hundreds of children with ADHD in many different forms. The picture of ADHD is like a spice rack, it comes in different colors, flavors and intensities. Now I will describe to you my methods and interactions with parents, teachers and other professionals such as social workers and psychologists.

Once ADHD has been diagnosed by a professional the treatment process always begins with helping the parent, guardian or caretaker understand the nature of ADHD.  ADHD or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a neuro-developmental syndrome that is one of the most common childhood conditions affecting 5 to 12% of children worldwide. (1) ADHD consists of inattention, distractibility, restless hyperactivity, poor impulse control and often other issues in “executive functioning,” which is the ability to organize, plan and carry out the plan. It is much more common in boys than in girls.

ADHD can be viewed as a developmental dysynchrony wherein there is a maturational lag in certain neurological areas of development. The syndrome might exist in a mild form for a third of young children who grow out of it as they age and catch up with peers in the same age group. It can also be moderate to severe in some needing treatment that persists into Adulthood. The symptoms are sometimes just excess amounts of normal behavior. Untreated ADHD can lead to children falling behind in school, have problems with social relationships and have long term adverse effects that impact their functioning as adults.

ADHD is a genetically predisposed condition that has complex patterns of inheritance.   Sophisticated brain imaging studies like (SPECT, PET and fMRI) show a decrease in blood flow (hypo-perfusion) in the frontal lobe and striatal areas of the brain, a sort of under functioning in areas of the brain that keep our motor activity and impulses in check. The lesser the blood flow, the more hyperactivity is displayed.

Preetham Grandhi M.D

For More on ADHD read: ADHD Treatments and Remedies: Top ADHD Experts Share Their Secrets to Success

No comments:

Post a Comment