Australia, the US and Channel 4 agree it all ADDs up.
WHAT used to be referred to as hyperactivity hyperactivity, excessive physical activity of emotional or physiological origin, usually seen in young children; one of the components of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. in children is now a recognised condition called Attention Deficit Disorder attention deficit (hyperactivity) disorder (ADD or ADHD)
Behavioral syndrome in children, whose major symptoms are inattention and distractibility, restlessness, inability to sit still, and difficulty concentrating on one thing for any (ADD) or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), formerly called hyperkinesis or minimal brain dysfunction, a chronic, neurologically based syndrome characterized by any or all of three types of behavior: hyperactivity, distractibility, and impulsivity. (ADHD Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Definition
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a developmental disorder characterized by distractibility, hyperactivity, impulsive behaviors, and the inability to remain focused on tasks or ).
In the United States United States, officially United States of America, republic (2005 est. pop. 295,734,000), 3,539,227 sq mi (9,166,598 sq km), North America. The United States is the world's third largest country in population and the fourth largest country in area. and in Australia, ADD, which is believed to be linked with neurological changes in the brains of some children, has been widely accepted for 30 years.
There, doctors have accepted that one in eight children may suffer from it and the drug Ritalin is commonly prescribed.
In Britain, ADD is increasingly being taken seriously, though many in the medical profession still regard it with scepticism.
There are now 90,000 prescriptions of the drug each year compared to 2000 six years ago.
Sympathetic experts believe a high proportion of people in prison suffer from undiagnosed ADD.
Boys are five time more likely to suffer from ADD than girls.
A recent Channel 4 series, Kid in the Corner, starring Scots actor Dougie Henshall as a caring father, highlighted the growing awareness of the problem and the horrors it can inflict on a family.
The drama showed the relief the parents of an ADD child felt when they realised they were not alone in the world.
Many families who have managed to get Ritalin prescribed for their children have described how it has turned their lives around and saved marriages.
There is an opposing school of thought that says children should not go through life in a permanently sedated state.
No one knows what causes ADD. Some medics Med´ics
n. 1. Science of medicine. believe children with ADD have a shortage of a substance called dopamine dopamine (dōp`əmēn), one of the intermediate substances in the biosynthesis of epinephrine and norepinephrine. See catecholamine.
One of the catecholamines, widely distributed in the central nervous system. in their brains.
Other suggestions include pollution, food allergies Food Allergies Definition
Food allergies are the body's abnormal responses to harmless foods; the reactions are caused by the immune system's reaction to some food proteins. , caffeine or the stresses of modern life.
An American doctor believes the rise in the condition is directly related to the drop in physical exercise among children in our increasingly desk-bound and car-dominated society.
10 things to look out for
MOST children will display some of these symptoms at different times, but if eight or more symptoms are constantly present, an ADD diagnosis might be made.
1 Difficulty concentrating and easily distracted. Has difficulty following instructions.
2 Inability to recognise danger and often puts themselves at physical risk.
3 Always interrupting and intruding on people.
4 Has very few friends and alienating school mates.
5 Displays impulsive or manic behaviour.
6 Sometimes can be physically aggressive and even violent.
7 Sleeps badly and family rarely gets a full night's sleep.
8 Talks excessively, loses things needed for tasks and blurts out answers.
9 Has difficulty playing quietly and does not seem able to listen.
10 Has difficulty remaining seated and shifts from one activity to another.
Where to seek help:
ADHD Family Support Group. Tel: 01373 826045
1. Highly or excessively active, as a gland.
2. Having behavior characterized by constant overactivity.
3. Afflicted with attention deficit disorder. Children's Support Group. Tel: 01903 725182
American Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorder website http://www.chadd.org
American National Attention Deficit Disorder Association website http://www.add.org