“ADHD is NOT caused by: poor parenting, falls or head injuries, traumatic life events, digital distractions, video games and television, lack of physical activity, food additives, food allergies, or excess sugar.” Attention Deficit Disorder Association (www.add.org)
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder that is usually diagnosed in childhood. However as our story shows, it may be diagnosed at any stage of life. The children’s behaviors are consistent problems with paying attention and/or controlling impulsivity which interfere with daily activities. In the long term untreated ADHD affects all type of school achievements and maturation. According to CHADD, it affects 17million people on the U.S. across all types of backgrounds and 60% have some of adults diagnosed as children have some symptoms as adults.
There are two main types of symptoms: Inattentive Type Presentation and Hyperactive Impulsive Type Presentation
With our sons we experienced problems with both types. When there is more than one affected child in the family it may be difficult to sort out the behaviors as Inattentive or Impulsive. When both types are identified in a person, it is called Combined Presentation. The symptoms changed as they matured, and the challenges became greater for us until each son was tested and diagnosed.
We kept waiting for our kids to outgrow inattentiveness and impulsivity because we knew that all kinds of things cause children to have trouble focusing and behaving in school and at home. But unlike most kids, their ADHD fueled minds continued to cause waves of rebellion even with professional guidance and medication as they matured.
For the untreated adult similar behaviors persist in workplace and throughout their lifestyle. Work issues are usually the most obvious for some adults with unmanaged symptoms. They also make unexplainable lifestyle decisions; and have costly auto and financial problems. Larry has described the effects on our family of his adult ADHD throughout the memoir.
The Attention Deficit Disorder Association’s (ADDA) mission includes focusing the prevalence of adolescents and adults with ADHD in the criminal justice system. On their website, www.add.org, they estimate that the prevalence is 4 to 8% of adults. But their research estimates that 25 to 40% of inmates in the criminal justice system have ADHD, most are undiagnosed and untreated. Identification and management in childhood could have significantly reduced these sad statistics. The good news is ADDA’s mission to improve diagnosis and treatment for inmates in prisons so that they have better outcomes as they leave the prison system.
ADHD is challenging at every age. But diagnosis and treatment can significantly improve life for the child and entire family’s experience. The earlier the diagnosis, the sooner improvements are possible. At every age there are opportunities to improve the person’s lifestyle by managing behaviors with the correct individualized treatment plan. While the plan may include medication, it always includes behavioral interventions, parent/patient training, and educational support at every age.
ADHD: THE FACTS
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by a persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity and impulsivity that interferes with daily functioning and life’s achievements. It is nondiscriminatory, affecting 17 million people of every age, gender, IQ, religion, and socioeconomic background across the United States.
ADHD begins in childhood and often continues through adolescence and adulthood. At least 60 percent of children with ADHD continue to exhibit symptoms of the disorder to and impairing degree in adulthood. It is estimated that four out of every five adults with ADHD remain undiagnosed.
Life for individuals with ADHD is riddle with difficulties in functioning, interpersonal, social, academic, and professional skills. ADHD causes significant impairments in school, work, and relationships. When not properly identified, diagnosed, and treated, it may have potentially devastating consequences including substance abuse, accidental injuries, and legal difficulties.
ADHD is highly manageable with an individualized, multimodal treatment approach that can include behavioral interventions, parent/patient training, educational support, and medication.
CHADD – The National Resource on ADHD
LEARN ABOUT PROGRAMS AND SERVICES FOR CHILDREN, ADULTS, AND FAMILIES LIVING WITH ADHD
CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION
CDC sponsors the National Resource Center, a program of CHADD – Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder. The National Resource Center operates a call center with trained staff to answer questions about ADHD. The number is 1-800-233-4050. Their website has links to information for people with ADHD and their families http://www.help4adhd.org/NRC.aspx. Additional Information: http://www.cdc.gov/adhd
CHADD – THE NATIONAL RESOURCE ON ADHD
CHADD improves the lives of people affected by ADHD. Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD), is a national non-profit, tax-exempt [Section 501(c)(3)] organization providing education, advocacy and support for individuals with ADHD. In addition to our informative website, CHADD also publishes a variety of printed materials to keep members and professionals current on research advances, medications and treatments affecting individuals with ADHD. These materials include Attention magazine, Attention weekly, a free electronically mailed current events newsletter, as well as other publications of specific interest to educators, professionals and parents. CHADD does not endorse, recommend, or make representations with respect to the research, services, medication, treatments or products on the website.
ADDA is the world’s leading adult ADHD organization.
The Attention Deficit Disorder Association (ADDA) is the organization. We are an international non-profit – 501C – organization founded over twenty-five years ago to help adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) lead better lives. Since its inception, ADDA has become the source for information and resources exclusively for and about adult ADHD. ADDA brings together scientific perspectives and the human experience to generate hope, awareness, empowerment and connections worldwide in the field of ADHD.
Supporting adults with ADHD has led ADDA to focus its efforts on the life stages where adults with ADHD struggle most:
• Adults with ADHD seeking support and connection throughout the lifespan. ADDA offers support, resources, and connection to adults with ADHD and their loved ones.
• The Transition to Post-Secondary Education. The transition from high school to post-secondary education is traditionally a difficult step, fraught with challenges and roadblocks for adults with ADHD.
• Adults with ADHD in the Workplace. ADHD affects 4.4% of U.S. adults. According to a 2012 U.S. economic impact
• Adults with ADHD in the Criminal Justice System. While estimated prevalence rates of ADHD in the general population range from 4 to 8%, it is estimated that 25 to 40% of inmates in the criminal justice system have ADHD most undiagnosed and untreated.