What is ADHD?

Piper Jensen

What is it?

ADHD (also referred to as ADD) stands for Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. It is a disorder that affects behavior. Over 3 million cases in the US are diagnosed each year. Symptoms in behavior include: aggression, excitability, fidgeting, hyperactivity, impulsivity, irritability, lack of restraint, persistent repetition of words or actions. Some cognitive symptoms include: absent-mindedness, difficulty focusing, forgetfulness, problem paying attention, or short attention span. I also affects your mood too: anger, anxiety, boredom, excitement, or mood swings. And in rare cases, depression or learning disability.

What part of the brain does it affect?

Believe it or not, brain development is the same for children with or without ADHD. The brain is the most complex organ in the human body. Over the course of 10 years, researchers have studied the brains of children with and without ADHD, and they have found that the size of the brains of children with ADHD are about 3% smaller than children without. Also, the pre frontal cortex, striatum, basal ganglia and cerebellum in children with ADHD, tend to be 5% smaller than children without ADHD. Also, low levels of dopamine are found in children with ADHD, resulting in children having ADHD.
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Who does it affect

ADHD mostly affects boys than girls. Since it is a very common condition, as children grow into adulthood, the balance between males and females with ADHD evens out . This is because when a child is diagnosed, the mother of that child starts to see signs in herself. Therefore, it is genetic. ADHD is commonly found in ages 6-40. ADHD found in children ages 6-13 are usually more active and loud. It mostly affects kids when they are in school, where they have to sit still and listen. Teachers have found that kids with ADHD have a shorter attention span. They have also noticed that while doing activities they enjoy doing, like video games and going outside, their attention span and focus level lasts longer.