News: Specialized Press

The Vasco-Navarra Psychiatry Association offers advice and recommendations to face Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Source: DOCOR COMUNICACION / Date: September 9th 2009 / Category: Specialized Press


The Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a behavioral syndrome with unclear causes in which there is a alteration of the central nervous system, that shows increased activity levels, impulsivity and lack of attention. This disease has a major heritage factor, and other known causes such as intrauterine intoxication (excessive alcohol or drugs during pregnancy), meningitis or a cranial traumatism in a little child.

Therefore, this pathology is “the name given to a variety of behaviors some children display since early childhood” stated Ana González-Pinto, President of the Vasco-Navarra Psychiatry Association (SVNP, in spanish); who also said that “these behaviors, to be diagnosis of disease, must be important enough so that the child has difficulties at school and home”.

The disease shows alterations in attention, concentration, impulsivity and hyperactivity. This is the reason why children with ADHD uses to be unorganized, have problems to plan tasks, forget things, lose them and are frequently restless and stand up in class or during meals. Likewise, “they frequently interrupt conversations and develop problems at school” stated González-Pinto.

Regarding epidemiologic impact, ADHD is more frequent in boys than in girls. Some experts present 6% prevalence at school age, 4% in adolescence and even a nearly 3% adult persistency. Anyway, this data is variable since some epidemiologic research point to a minor prevalence (2,3% of children may have enough symptoms for a diagnosis).

“Treatment must be based in three key cornerstones: family, school and pharmacologic treatment” as explained by González-Pinto. “Some cases may progress fine without medication, but in general, medication helps a quick start improvement y allows progress at work, school and family coexistence” she added.

In this aspect, experts state that it is convenient that parents receive guidance to help their children in the organization of their time. It is also important that the child has his schedule in hard copy, help to organize his material y permission to leave the table for short periods of time. It is also important to make sure that the child has understood, since many times they don`t process information accurately.

Also, at school, the child must receive the same treatment than his pairs. Nevertheless, a child may require additional supervision, which may mean an overburden for the teacher.

From the SVNP it`s assured that it is sometimes common that these children receive additional support since “as they have lack of attention, they learn less in class, even when their intelligence is average”.

Hyperactivity tends to improve by the end of adolescence, “but approximately half still keeps some lack of attention during adulthood”. According to Ana Gonzáles-Pinto, this is the reason why “the child must adapt to his/her limitations and establish mechanisms to help him/her carry out a normal life”.

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