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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: What is ADHD?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, also called ADHD is a well recognised clinical condition. It consists of a group of behavioural symptoms that is unrelated to the person’s underlying intellect. The common symptoms include poor attention span, excessive activity and impulsive behaviour.

In this article, we shall briefly discuss ADHD and its causes.

ADHD definition

ADHD was first described in 1902 by George Still. While it has been given different names through years of research, it has now come to be called ADHD. While there is no standardised definition of ADHD, it appears there are a few main components to it, as laid out by the Diagnostics and Statistics Manual of Mental Disorders –

  1. Persistent inattentiveness and/or hyperactivity that is above what is to be expected from a child or adult of the same age
  2. Presence of these symptoms before the child is 7 years old
  3. The clinical features impair normal social and academic functioning, along with occupational capabilities
  4. The features are not due to other conditions such as Schizophrenia or similar psychotic disorders.

In simple terms, ADHD is typically characterised by –

  • Inattentiveness
  • Hyperactivity
  • Impulsiveness
  • Being easily distracted

ADHD can occur at any age, but often starts as a child and can progress throughout life all the way to adulthood.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a well recognised clinical condition.

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