ADHD symptoms in children

ADHD or Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder is the medical condition that makes people have difficulty in impulsive control, attention and organization. The causes of the ADHD are variety. They can come from genetics, antenatal problems, obstetric problems or even the severe deprivation. Almost people undergo the daydreaming, fidgeting or distraction but the patients especially the children with ADHD can meet the more serious trouble as inability to keep quiet, to focus or even move their body. Following are some significant ADHD symptoms which are often seen in the children.

  1. Three main type of ADHD symptoms
  2. ADHD symptoms at home
  3. ADHD symptoms at school
  4. ADHD symptoms at doctor’s office
  5. Some possible treatments for the ADHD children


1. Three main type of ADHD symptoms

Inattention: The children in their toddler and pre-school time often have difficulty in concentrating, staying still and controlling their activities. The children at the age of 2 or 3 easily move their concentration from one thing to another when they are discovering their surroundings. Furthermore, the ADHD children through the first years of life cannot develop their ability to control their behavior and concentration on tasks. They do not achieve their organization and attention, which seems to be appearing in this stage. Although these ADHD symptoms generally appear before the age of seven, the children at this stage are often diagnosed late. The children with attention deficit can be diagnosed because these symptoms can have negative impacts on their academic performance. However, they meet a lot of troubles as forgetfulness, boredom, instruction remember and concentration. The ADHD children with inattention are often called the daydreamers” or spaced out”. They can meet trouble in detecting in particular the girls. The girls are often unidentified and more likely to have the attention deficit so they are more difficult to be diagnosed and treated.


The children with ADHD can show the ADHD symptoms as:

– Cannot pay attention to the details or their exercises

– Make many mistakes while playing and learning

– Let the tasks uncompleted and move to another

– Lose things regularly

– Be often distracted and forget things

  • Hyperactivity/impulsivity: the children with hyperactivity have trouble in controlling their behaviors. They can act as rudeness, disregard and willful disobedience and then make other people misunderstand. They tend to act and explore new things with enthusiasm without asking for permission. Because of their unrestrained behaviors, they can make the careless accidents as breaking their possessions or hurt their body physically. The ADHD children with hyperactivity/impulsivity can irritate other people since they cannot wait for their turn. The ADHD symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity can make the children easy to be diagnosed than the inattention; boys appear to have a closer relationship with these symptoms than girls.


The children often:

– Are “on the go” and “driven by a motor” all the time

– Interrupt and pop the answers even when the questions are not completed

– Cannot wait for their turn

– Cannot sit still or fidget a lot when it is important to do

– Make noise when they are told to keep quiet


  • Combined type: the symptoms of the third type of symptoms include both the inattention and the hyperactivity/impulsivity symptoms. This is the most common type of ADHD symptoms.

2. ADHD symptoms at home


The children who have attention deficit can show some of following ADHD symptoms:

– Have burden in concentrating and easily shifting attention

– Be distracted by sounds or nearby activity

– Appear to ignore other people while they are speaking

– Make careless mistakes in their housework and activities

– Misplace and lose items

– Have trouble in organizing tasks

– Avoid the activities which need the continual concentration


The children with hyperactivity and impulsivity can:

– Fidget hands and feet

– Cannot have still sit at school

– Run and climb in inappropriate places

– Cannot play in quite: they need interactions with other people

– Talk excessively

– Be “on the go” and “driven by a motor” in activities and thought. They do something in a long time with no break, despite they can be tired but they are unable to wind down

– Pop answers when their questions have not been given completely

– Cannot wait for their turn. They lose patience easily while waiting for their turn

– Interrupt other people

3. ADHD symptoms at school


The children at school can shoe some of following ADHD symptoms:

  • Cannot concentrate on their schoolwork and listen to the teacher’s instruction. They can be easily distracted by the sounds, peers or even the decoration in the classroom walls
  • Have problems in organizing their schoolwork and remember tasks. The very simple activities as “turn to page 99 in literature book or let’s read pages 35” can be a big deal to the ADHD children. They often miss their homework assignments and textbook. Their papers can notebooks can be cluttered.
  • Cannot sit still. The ADHD children might not remain seated because they might be lack of the importance of sitting still.
  • Waiting for their turn might be burden. They cannot wait for their turn in line and games or even they cannot wait for giving answers. They appear to be impatient, they insist to be in the first place, which can make their peers and teachers misunderstand.


  • They have difficulty in order their learning activities. Almost children have difficulty in learning, however with the ADHD children, if they still have the bad academic performance after treating, they should have a special evaluation for their learning disorder
  • Speech and language problems
  • Mental health issues: they can have problems with co-existing mood and anxiety disorders.
  • The ADHD children can have the bad impacts from medications on their schoolwork. The cognitive and behavioral effects can interfere their school performances. The mood can be changed more easily and the new behaviors can appear more often.

4. ADHD symptoms at doctor’s office

The children often show their ADHD symptoms during the office visit. The children with hyperactivity and impulsivity can still have problem in sitting. However, some of children tend to hide their ADHD symptoms because they are under control of their behavior in short times. The parents of ADHD children, the teachers and even the caregivers can be helpful sources of information for the doctors to evaluate the symptoms and determine the cause of ADHD symptoms.


The clinicians can meet some of following troubles when they diagnose and treat the children with ADHD:

  • The ADHD symptoms vary day by day along with the growing of the children. The children should be watched regularly to have the appropriate diagnosis.
  • The behavioral conditions are similar to ADHD and co-exist with ADHD. The doctors can fail to follow rules and instructions because they are similar to the behavior disorders as conduct disorder and oppositional defiant disorder.

Anxiety disorders. The ADHD children can cause agitation and meet the burden in focusing. The anxiety disorders can be divided into three main groups: the generalized anxiety disorders: constant anxiety; social phobia: the social situations and the embarrassment can be root of this anxiety; and the specific phobias: the children might be feared of a particular object or situation.


  • Mood disorder. The ADHD children can have depression and bipolar disorders; as a result, they are often unable to pay attention. The bipolar disorder is presented in many children with ADHD, which is often preceded by the emergence of ADHD. The children can have ADHD symptoms after using the stimulants medication. However, the mood can be changed instability.
  • Inattention and hyperactivity can be caused by the medical conditions and prescribed medications. The common symptoms of this condition are sleep disorders, seizure disorders, toxic exposures and genetic conditions. The children with ADHD should undergo the relevant laboratory tests and physical examinations. The children can have these negative effects from some prescription medications.


  • The ADHD children often have difficulty in sharing about their behavior. The specific and detailed questions about their symptoms should be given by the doctors to have a comprehensive understanding of ADHD conditions. Furthermore, the parents and teachers can help to talk about their ADHD children because they have the accurate descriptions of behaviors. In addition, the children might not be aware of their conditions and unwilling to admit their ADHD symptoms, the observations from others as parents, caregivers and teachers can be more helpful and clearer. Because of this, the families of ADHD children should be coached. The parents with the full understanding of ADHD can help their children reduce the symptoms.

5. Some possible treatments for the ADHD children


The combination of treatments is the most effective method to cope with ADHD. The first part of this combination should be the psychological intervention. A variety of psychological interventions is helpful. In this method, the parents play a crucial role. They should be provided with the key tools to achieve the desired behaviors. They should also have the clear guidance sessions and coaching, which can help their children to develop the strategies to cope with ADHD. The next method is biological interventions or medicines. No one can deny the effectiveness of medication treatments when coping with ADHD symptoms. However, the parents of ADHD children should remember that medicines are only used to reduce the symptoms not eliminate them. The family, teachers and ADHD doctors should have frequent communication to make sure that the medications are still serving well and the side effects are under control. The intervention from school and family are beneficial.


Furthermore, the behavioral treatments are the useful treatment for the children who do not follow the medication treatments. Some researches show that behavior therapy can work well for the children who have the poor relationship with parents or have opposition and aggression in the family. In general, the children with ADH should have the most comprehensive combination of treatments to stay away from ADHD as far as possible.

The ADHD children can have variety of ADHD symptoms as persistent restlessness, impulsivity and inattention. The parents, teachers and the professionals should notice these symptoms to have early diagnosis and treatments suitably for the children with ADHD.


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