ADHD in Children (cont.)

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What are signs and symptoms of ADHD in children?

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ADHD symptoms include the following:

Inattention

  • Often makes careless mistakes or fails to pay adequate attention to detail
  • Trouble paying attention during work or leisure activities
  • Does not seem to be listening and appears to zone out when spoken to directly
  • Frequently fails to complete instructions or to complete work tasks or chores
  • Often has trouble organizing a task or activity
  • Frequently avoids, dislikes, or resists participating in tasks that require sustained focus
  • Often loses things needed to complete tasks or activities
  • Easily distracted by extraneous input or unrelated thoughts
  • Often forgetful

Hyperactivity/impulsivity

  • Often fidgety or taps hands or feet
  • Frequently has trouble staying seated
  • Often feels restless
  • Has trouble engaging in leisure activities quietly
  • Engages in multiple activities at once
  • Talks excessively
  • Frequently interrupts others talking
  • Trouble waiting his or her turn
  • Often intrudes on others

The fact that children with ADHD may be able to highly focus on activities they enjoy, even to a fault, does not mean that they do not have the disorder. The difference in attention of ADHD children is that they tend to be less able to pay attention consistently, particularly when faced with less pleasurable activities. While symptoms like insomnia and low frustration tolerance are not specific to ADHD or required for its diagnosis, many children, teens, and adults with this illness have these symptoms.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/28/2014

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