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Children with ADHD often misunderstood and maligned

In recent years there have been increased efforts to diagnose and treat children with a disorder known as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD. Children who are diagnosed with ADHD display certain behavioral symptoms realted to inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity that are often deemed to be disruptive in nature.

A child with ADHD may be easily distracted, talk out of turn, have trouble listening and following directions, experience trouble focusing and be labeled as a disruptive and problematic student in a traditional educational setting. For these reasons, it’s important that a child with ADHD be diagnosed and that parents explore ways to help a child succeed. For example some parents choose to provide a child with prescription medication and therapy. 

Doctors do not know what causes ADHD, but both genetic and environmental factors are believed to play a role in the disorder's development. According to the National Institutes of Mental Health, approximately 13 percent of U.S. children ages 13 to 18 have been diagnosed with ADHD. Based upon statistics, for unknown reasons boys appear to be more prone to the development of the disorder.

In addition to possible medications and therapies, children diagnosed with ADHD benefit from having predicable schedules and order in their lives. Parents should also provide clear and consistent directions and rules and be sure to praise a child for his or her successes.

In some cases, a child with ADHD may qualify to receive Social Security disability benefits. While symptoms associated with ADHD tend to dissipate with age, some individuals continue to struggle with symptoms into adulthood and may therefore also qualify to receive SSD benefits.

Source: National Institute of Mental Health, "What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD, ADD)?," 2014

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