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Diagnosis in Children

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is generally first diagnosed during the primary school years. Symptoms are always present before the age of seven, but sometimes continue into adolescence. ADHD is seen more commonly in boys. Symptoms often become less severe in late teenage and in early adulthood, although it seems that people do not 'outgrow' ADHD, but learn to master strategies to compensate for the symptoms.

ADHD is under-recognised, with less than a half of the affected individuals receiving appropriate diagnoses, and of those who are diagnosed, few receive appropriate treatment. Left untreated, ADHD could have a significant negative impact on the wellbeing of a child and his/her family. A child with ADHD who doesn't receive proper diagnosis and treatment may suffer academically and experience behavioural symptoms into adulthood.

When properly diagnosed, the symptoms of ADHD can be treated and managed. If you are a parent, sibling, or friend, and are concerned that someone you care for may be affected by ADHD, refer to the information below to learn more about how ADHD is diagnosed.

While it is true that people who have ADHD may have special needs, there is a need for the understanding and support from family, friends, and loved ones. Managing ADHD begins with knowing the signs that characterise it.

Download PDF : Caring for Children with ADHD : A Resource Toolkit

Download PDF : Social Skills in Adults with ADHD

Diagnosis in Adults

Historically, ADHD was considered to be primarily a childhood condition. However, recent data suggest that symptoms of ADHD continue into adulthood in up to fifty percent of persons with childhood ADHD.

ADHD or Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder affects thirty to fifty percent of adults who had ADHD in childhood. Accurate diagnosis of ADHD in adults is challenging and requires attention to early development, and symptoms of inattention, distractibility, impulsivity and emotional lability.

Difficulties in college are typically symptomised by an incomplete degree or taking a longer time to complete the degree, and are accompanied by difficulties engaging in further education.

In the workplace, ADHD adults are often underachievers (mixed reviews) with low efficiency levels (takes up to 4times longer to complete tasks).

At home, they are generally poor organisers and leave behind incomplete tasks and chores. They often have strained relationships with their spouses and children, which are further complicated if the children also have ADHD.

Download PDF : Diagnosis of ADHD in Adults (National Resource Centre on ADHD)

Download PDF : 50 Tips on the management of Adult ADD


Rating Scales (PDF format downloadable)

1. Copeland Symptom Checklist for ADD

2. Child & Adolescent ADHD Symptom Checklist

3. Snap-IV-C Rating Scale

4. Novotni Social Skills Checklist - Observer Report

5. Novotni Social Skills Checklist - Self-Report

6. Vanderbilt Assessment Scale - Parent Informant

7. Vanderbilt Assessment Scale - Teacher Informant

ADHD self test
Reading List
Copyright Dr. Shabeer Jeeva - 2011
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