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October is Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)  Awareness month. ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder affecting both children and adults. 

ADHD is estimated to be present in 5.29% of the children worldwide. In adults, this is between 2.8 and 4.4%. These are averages: estimates vary in different countries.

In most people having the diagnosis, ADHD is likely to be the result of their genetic make-up (i.e. their DNA) and events that happen to them throughout life. Together, these may cause slight differences in the development of the brain, as we see them in people with ADHD.

ADHD involves problems with setting priorities, getting organized and getting started; sustaining attention and effort, managing alertness and emotions; utilizing working memory and other aspects of the brain’s self-management system, its “executive functions.”

There are three presentations of ADHD:

  • Inattentive

  • Hyperactive-impulsive

  • Combined inattentive & hyperactive-impulsive

ADHD Resources


  • impulsivity

  • lack of focus or concentration

  • hyperactivity

  • racing thoughts

  • emotional overwhelm

  • reactivity


Inattentive Presentation of Symptoms

  • Fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes.

  • Has difficulty sustaining attention.

  • Does not appear to listen.

  • Struggles to follow through on instructions.

  • Has difficulty with organization.

  • Avoids or dislikes tasks requiring sustained mental effort.

  • Loses things.

  • Is easily distracted.

  • Is forgetful in daily activities.

Hyperactive-impulsive Presentation of Symptoms

  • Fidgets with hands or feet or squirms in chair.

  • Has difficulty remaining seated.

  • Runs about or climbs excessively in children; extreme restlessness in adults.

  • Difficulty engaging in activities quietly.

  • Acts as if driven by a motor; adults will often feel inside like they were driven by a motor.

  • Talks excessively.

  • Blurts out answers before questions have been completed.

  • Difficulty waiting or taking turns.

  • Interrupts or intrudes upon others.

Combined Inattentive & Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation of Symptoms

  • Includes symptoms from both categories above

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