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5 Signs Your Child Could Be Suffering from ADHD

5 Signs Your Child Could Be Suffering from ADHD

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a mental health condition recognized by the American Psychiatric Association (APA). It causes a wide range of impulsive and hyperactive behaviors. And though it’s usually diagnosed in children when they have difficulty at school and home, adults may be diagnosed with the disorder too.

At Fayrouz Pediatrics in Clifton, New Jersey, board-certified pediatrician Dr. Hisham Gadalla and his staff specialize in diagnosing and treating ADHD in children of all ages. It’s important you learn to recognize potential signs of the condition so you’ll know when to get medical help.

Signs your child could be suffering from ADHD

ADHD is often associated with problems in a classroom setting, but it affects all aspects of a child’s life. In children who have predominantly inattentive ADHD, which is more common in girls than boys, signs include:

  1. Difficulty focusing
  2. Daydreaming
  3. Trouble following instructions
  4. Difficulty completing tasks
  5. Being easily distracted or forgetful

In children who have predominantly hyperactive-impulsive ADHD, which is more common in boys, signs include:

  1. Squirming and fidgeting
  2. Hyperactivity or boundless energy
  3. Inability to wait their turn or frequent interruption of others during conversation
  4. Excessive chattering
  5. Acting on every impulse

The most common type of ADHD, though, is the form that combines both hyperactivity and inattentiveness.

According to the CDC, 10% of children aged 5-17 receive an ADHD diagnosis, making it one of the most common childhood neurodevelopmental disorders in the United States.

Treating ADHD

No matter the type of ADHD your child has, at Fayrouz Pediatrics, we usually combine medication, such as Ritalin® or Adderall®, and behavioral therapy. There’s also a lot you can do at home that can help your child learn to interact more effectively with the people around them.

Here are some suggestions for how you can support your child well.

Establish structure

Children with ADHD complete tasks more often when they occur in predictable patterns and take place in predictable places. Establish a consistent routine for things like schoolwork, chores, and social activities, and make sure your child knows what to expect from you and others around them.

Set clear expectations and boundaries

Establish clear, well-established rules for how your child should behave, and set up a system of rewards and consequences. Always follow through on both rewards and consequences so they’re able to link them to their actions.

Help your child eat right

Food doesn’t cause ADHD, but it does affect your child’s mental state, which affects their behavior. In addition, children with ADHD tend to eat or not eat compulsively, which can make them sick. A healthy diet can put them on the right path.

Schedule a routine for regular meals and snacks. They shouldn't be more than three hours apart since your child needs a regular intake of healthy food, and eating both provides a necessary break from activity and serves as another important routine.

Encourage exercise and sleep

Moving their body boosts your child’s concentration, promotes brain growth, and leads to better sleep, all of which can reduce ADHD symptoms.

Help teach social skills and rules

Children with ADHD have difficulty learning the rules of social behavior. You can help by role-playing social situations for them at home. Make sure to reward good play behaviors and to establish consequences for bad ones to help them learn the difference.

If you notice any of the signs of ADHD in your child, it’s time to bring them to Fayrouz Pediatrics for an evaluation, diagnosis, and treatment. Give us a call at 973-834-5539, or book your appointment online today.

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