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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is difficult to diagnose because it often shares or mimics the symptoms of other disorders. Some of the most common conditions seen with ADHD are depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, learning disabilities, and conduct disorder.

One of the characteristic of Bipolar Disorder, for example, is “easily distracted” which is also one of the most common characteristics of ADHD. Finding a qualified medical practitioner, preferably one that specializes in ADHD and related disorders, is extremely important.  Proper diagnosis is essential in determining the correct treatment plan. 

Common characteristics of an ADHD child include the following:

  • difficulty sustaining attention
  • is easily distracted
  • often does not seem to listen
  • often does not complete activities
  • loses things
  • often interrupts or intrudes on others
  • has difficulty awaiting turn in groups
  • often blurts out answers to questions
  • often engages in physically dangerous activities
    without considering the consequences
  • Talks excessively
  • has difficulty playing quietly
  • has difficulty remaining seated
  • often fidgets or squirms in seat
  • difficulty following instructions.

ADHD or ADD is likely present if more than 8 of the above conditions are present.

Try not to be dismayed…people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder also have incredibly wonderful attributes. An ADHD child or adult might not be able to focus on one thing at a time but are often very good at juggling a couple of larger tasks all at once. People with ADHD are typically sensitive, intuitive, highly creative and intelligent (despite what the standardized test scores say) because they look at the world differently than the norm. Attention Deficit Disorder and ADHD can be a gift, if managed well. The task is to find ways to manage the negative ADD and ADHD symptoms of Attention Deficit that will allow the positive attributes of ADD and ADHD to shine through.


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