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  • Attention deficit disorder (ADD) is a neurological condition that has been found to be occuring in 5-10% of the population and which affects cognition, learning and behaviour. It is believed that the condition arises from anomalous brain chemistry and possibly anatomy.

  • Symptoms of the disorder may include: impulsivity, low stress tolerance and over reaction, poor organization and task completion, extreme mood swing, high anxiety and /or short, excessive temper. There is a common misconception that the attentional problems of ADD appear in a consistent manner in all areas of an individual's life. It is more of an inability to regulate attention, impulse control and behavior.

  • Students often have difficulty concentrating on and completing tasks, frequently shifting from one uncompleted activity to another. In social situations, inattention may be apparent by frequent shifts in conversation, poor listening comprehension, and not following the details or rules of games and other activities. Symptoms of hyperactivity may take the form of restlessness and difficulty with quiet activities.

US doctors take new look at kids' concentration problems

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics recently released new recommendations for diagnosing school-age children with attention deficit/ hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
    The academy said that between 4 and 12 percent of all US school-age children may have the problem - marked by inattention, hyperactivity and impulsive behaviour-and there has been recent concern that doctors may be over-diagnosing it.

  • Surveys of pediatricians and family physicians across the US have shown wide variations in diagnostic criteria and treatment methods, the academy said. Earlier this year, a report in the Journal of the American Medical Association said there had been a steep rise in the number of US preschool children who got prescriptions for pschotropic drugs, including those used to treat ADHD.

  • The new guidelines, developed by a panel of medical, mental health and educational experts, are designed for doctors diagnosing the disorder in order children between the ages These new guidelines recommend that primary care clinicians should make evaluations using criteria developed by the American Psychiatric Association. of six and 12.
    Those criteria specify that symptoms be present in two or more of Child's settings and they adversely affect the child's functioning for six months.

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