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8 signs to help you identify ADHD in children

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Curious fact: ADHD is more common in boys than girls, in fact, for every girl who has ADHD, there will be two boys with ADHD.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders in children, as it is usually detected at an early age and may last until adulthood. This disorder often causes problems maintaining attention, controlling impulsive behavior, or being hyperactive. According to studies by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), 9.4% of children between the ages of 2 and 17 are diagnosed with ADHD and only 33% of children with ADHD finish high school.

What signs can someone with ADHD have?

It may be normal for children to have difficulty maintaining attention, however, in children with ADHD the difficulty usually remains over the years. This disorder may start to cause problems with academic performance, at home, or with friends.

Here are some of the behaviors that may occur in children with ADHD:

  • Fantasizing a lot.
  • Forgetting or losing things very often.
  • Twisting or moving nervously.
  • Talking a lot.
  • Making careless mistakes or taking unnecessary risks.
  • Having trouble resisting impulses.
  • Having trouble respecting turns.
  • Having difficulty getting along with others.
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General categories

It is also considered that there are three different types of general ADHD, which are categorized by the symptom that predominates in the child’s behavior. The general categories are:

  • ADHD where attention deficit predominates
  • ADHD where hyperactivity predominates
  • ADHD where both are expressed equally.

The 7 types of ADHD

Throughout the years, experts have found that there are 7 more specific categories of ADHD, categorizing them by their characteristics and effects on the patient.

  • Classic ADHD: This type of ADHD can be observed since the patient is a baby due to hyperactivity behaviors.
  • ADHD due to lack of attention: In this case, the symptoms are apathy and difficulty to be present in the moment. The patient often lacks motivation to carry out daily activities.
  • Overfocused ADD: The main symptom of this type of ADHD is the difficulty in switching focus and attention between tasks, which causes the patient to be very efficient only for one task at a time.
  • Temporal lobe ADD: This type of ADHD has the same symptoms as classic ADD, plus temporal lobe problems such as memory loss, learning problems, emotional instability, etc.
  • Limbic ADD: It usually has symptoms such as depression or euphoria.
  • Ring of fire ADD: This type of ADHD is characterized by specific brain activity that the patient has. Usually, patients with this type of ADD feel overwhelmed with their thoughts and emotions. This type of ADD is treated with non-stimulant medicines.
  • Anxious ADHD: With this ADHD there is little activity in the prefrontal cortex and high activity in the basal ganglia causing anxiety.

Possible causes

Although the causes of this disorder are not always certain, it is thought that many of the possible causes may come from environmental factors, or problems during pregnancy or childbirth. The most likely causes for ADHD are:

  • Brain injury
  • Environmental exposure (e.g., lead)
  • Consumption of alcohol or tobacco during pregnancy
  • Premature birth
  • Low birth weight
  • Exposure to toxins in the environment
  • Diets high in processed foods
  • Consanguineous family members suffering from ADHD

Possible consequences

Unfortunately, many people with ADHD are never diagnosed, so they will never receive adequate treatment to manage the consequences of this disorder. This is a fairly common problem, as a study by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) shows that 5.4% of adult men and 3.2% of adult women have ADHD and only 20% of them are diagnosed. Untreated ADHD may result in:

  • Depression
  • Drug abuse
  • Traffic accidents
  • Unemployment
  • Dropping out of school
  • Obesity
  • Financial problems
  • Divorce
  • Suicide


Over the years, a wide variety of treatments have been used to help treat ADHD. Currently, the American Pediatric Association recommends behavioral therapies, which are accompanied by different medications. Children between the ages of 4 and 5 are advised to only use behavioral therapy and to use medications only if the therapy is not effective on its own.

Behavior therapy consists of exercises to learn or strengthen positive behaviors and eliminate unwanted ones. This therapy may also include training for parents

Parent therapy is about learning skills and strengthening those they already have in order to guide their children to have and maintain positive behaviors. It has also been proven that this therapy helps parents strengthen their relationship with their children and decreases problematic behaviors of children.

Similarly, in behavioral therapy for children, the therapist works with them to replace bad behaviors or problems. Many times, therapists help children find assertive ways to express their emotions, so they don’t cause problems for themselves and others.

There is also behavioral therapy accompanied by medication for children in middle school and teenagers. Some of the processes that are carried out are the following:

  • Parental training in behavioral therapy.
  • Conduct management in the classroom.
  • Interventions with parents focused on behavior.
  • Training in organizational skills.
  • Combination of behavioral treatments.


In addition to behavioral therapy, it is very common to use medicine to help control the symptoms of ADHD, such as behavioral problems. There are stimulant and non-stimulant medicines. Stimulants are the best known and commonly used because of their effectiveness to treat the symptoms of ADHD in a very short time. Non-stimulating treatments, despite not working quickly, have a duration of up to 24 hours.

Also, it is important to mention that medications may affect every child in different ways, so the patient should always be kept under constant and strict monitoring and follow-up, in order to be able to make adjustments to treatments and medications if necessary.

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Complementary treatment

In addition to behavioral therapies and commonly used medications, there are other types of complementary treatments such as:

  • Food treatments, it is believed that many reactions to food and beverages can generate hyperactive behavior. These treatments consist of adding complementary substances that are believed to be beneficial to alleviate the deficiency.
  • Homeopathy, this therapeutic system is based on the “similarity system” where the disorder is treated with diluted substances that cause the symptoms on healthy people.
  • Herbal medicine, use of botanical medicines, taking advantage of their therapeutic properties.
  • Osteopathy, this treatment seeks to heal the affections of ADHD by stimulating the musculoskeletal system.

It is important to mention that these treatments are not supported by scientific evidence as they show little, if any, effectiveness to treat ADHD, so it is recommended to consult this type of complementary treatments with your doctor.

Health insurance

There are situations that can change life in the blink of an eye. For that reason, in BYBS we focus on finding and assembling health coverages that perfectly adapt to your needs; so that in the event of certain, you know with certainty that everything has a solution.

For more information visit our website, where you will find the different coverages, we offer. We have guaranteed approval coverage, which allows you to enroll regardless of your health status, or for those who do not qualify for public health insurance. ( #CallBlanca (202) 316-4503


Real story

Manuel Ruiz is a 27-year-old who tells the story of his ADHD diagnosis at the age of 7. At that young age, many of his symptoms were evident to him and his classmates, so his classmates labeled him “the freak” and “the weird one” without knowing that he was suffering from a serious condition. This affected his security and mental health. This situation continued over the years, until adolescence, where these types of conditions have very strong effects on people’s well-being. For Manuel, his adolescence was one of his biggest “scars”, as he had to fight against the label that had been put on him since he was a child. Over the years and with a lot of work, Manuel has managed to get over this and now has a full and happy life.


As parents, you should always keep in mind that ADHD is a very common disorder in children, so it is recommended to always be on the lookout for any symptoms and consult with your family doctor about the best approaches to this disorder. Also, it is very important for parents to take therapy with their children to strengthen their relationship and avoid feelings of abandonment. Similarly, you should always keep an eye on your children so that appropriate changes to their treatment can be made to ensure their well-being and happiness.

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