Posted: August 01, 2018 15:38 by admin

What is ADHD


ADHD is a lifelong, highly genetic brain-based disorder that has to do with a persistent pattern of inattention and hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development across time and settings.  It is caused by chemical or structural differences in the brain mostly as a result of genetics.



The Facts About ADHD

  • ADHD is a highly genetic, complex brain-based disorder that has to do with the regulation of a particular set of brain functions and related behaviors.

  • It causes significant difficulty in focusing and managing life’s tasks.

  • It affects 11% of children and 5% of all adults nationwide. It is not limited to children and can persist throughout a person’s life. ADHD occurs in both males and females.

  • It is often both underdiagnosed and overdiagnosed. Children who do not show constant physical activity may not be correctly diagnosed.

  • It affects essential brain functioning skills such as memory, motivation, impulsivity, organization, social skills, and hyperactivity.

  • ADHD can be inattentive, hyperactive or a combination. No case of ADHD is the same. Each person experiences it differently.

Types of ADHD

Current medical terminology uses the term Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD. ADD is no longer a term in use. Predominantly Inattentive Presentation, Predominantly Hyperactive/Impulsive Presentation, and Combined Presentation reflect the most common forms of the condition. A more appropriate name for attention deficit would be attention deregulation since many with ADHD have attention, they just can’t always harness it in the right direction.

  • People with ADHD, predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive presentation are impulsive and impatient. They may talk out of turn, seem to be driven by a motor, and can make decisions impulsively.

  • People with ADHD, predominantly Inattentive presentation are easily distracted and forgetful. They may lose track of assignments, conversations with others, and may forget the next task to be completed.

  • People with ADHD, predominantly Combined presentation display a mixture of these symptoms and can become quite frustrated with themselves or of others for not understanding them.

  • To be diagnosed, at least six of the below symptoms must be demonstrated in more than one setting preferably by more than one observer:

Symptoms of ADHD, predominantly Inattentive presentation

  • Fails to give attention, has difficulty sustaining attention, easily distracted

  • Does not seem to listen when spoken to directly

  • Makes careless mistakes

  • Forgetful in daily activities

  • Has trouble following instructions and organizing tasks, loses things necessary for completing tasks

  • Dislikes tasks that require considerable mental effort

Symptoms of ADHD, predominantly Hyperactive/Impulsive presentation:

  • Fidgets with hands or feet or whole body movement

  • Leaves seat where sitting is expected

  • Runs or climbs when it is not appropriate

  • Always seems on the go or driven by a motor

  • Talks excessively and blurts out answers

  • Interrupts others

What Causes ADHD?

ADHD is not caused by poor parenting, traumatic experiences, video games, allergies or diet. While it was believed to be related to head injuries or refined sugars, research shows that those with ADHD have abnormalities in how the neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine work to facilitate communication between neurons and activation of various brain functions. ADHD is diagnosed by a medical evaluation and supplemented with neuropsychological testing and treated by both medical and mental health professionals.

How ADHD is Treated

  • Stimulant medication which works on a neurological level to regulate the brain is often recommended since studies show it to be most effective when the right medication and dosage is found.

  • Behavior therapy helps by structuring time at home and implementing rewards and consequences. This type of therapy requires participation from parents and teachers.

  • Cognitive behavioral therapy helps change negative patterns of thinking and can treat mood disorders and anxiety as well.

  • Nutrition changes can make a big difference for patients with ADHD. Eating clean, whole foods such as vegetables, fruits, and lean meats can lead to better emotional health. A Harvard Health Blog states that 25 percent of people were less likely to experience mood disorders with these nutrition changes.

  • Supplements can give bodies the nutrients they need when their diet does not.

  • Exercise can take the place of stimulant medication for a few people with ADHD. Exercise releases essential chemicals which affect focus and attention. A study found that 30 minutes of exercise before the school day can help kids with ADHD focus better.

  • Meditation

ADHD can mirror symptoms of anxiety, depression and auditory processing disorder. It is best to be diagnosed by a professional who can differentiate ADHD from other disorders and seeming imposters.

ADHD West Palm Beach


Dr. Lee Ann Lehman

Dr. Lee Ann Lehman focuses on the entire family as she helps to resolve complex issues. Her approach is different because she thinks outside the box to help guide you to the best solution(s) tailored to fit your needs and works alongside you empowering you with the tools to gain control of your situation. Using respect, kindness, and understanding, she helps you to feel that it is okay to seek help rather than continue to be troubled by your situation. Her techniques are evidence-based and proven to be effective. As a result, she can help families learn coping skills to help deal with complex mental health issues and situations such as divorce, substance abuse, and trauma. Driven by her practice’s mission statement: “To increase an individual’s and/or family’s ability to cope with difficult situations using acceptance, understanding, education, and guided practice with the tools necessary to restore confidence and freedom from the burden of emotional and physical threat.” 

Call today at 561-701-3159 to obtain answers to your questions and to schedule your appointment.
West Palm Beach
The Family Psychologist
2101 Vista Parkway
Suite 202
West Palm Beach, FL 33411
(561) 701-3159

The Family Psychologist
8461 Lake Worth Road
Lake Worth, FL 33467

(561) 701-3159

The Family Psychologist
850 NW Federal Highway
Stuart, FL 34994
(561) 701-3159

The Family Psychologist
100 E. Linton Blvd.
Suite 140A
Delray Beach, FL 33483
(561) 701-3159

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