As you may know, ADHD is a complex disorder that can impact your child in a myriad of ways, including in their life.
For example, children with ADHD may find it hard to stay focused and perform well in school, and they may feel more irritable or less interested in school.
There’s also evidence that ADHD is associated with poor academic performance and academic self-efficacy, which may explain why so many parents find it challenging to help their children overcome ADHD symptoms.
In this video, Dr. Susanne Moller, director of the ADHD Education and Treatment Program at the University of Minnesota and co-author of the book ADHD: The Next Big Thing, talks with The Globe and Mail’s Elizabeth Bown to help you understand the importance of helping your child achieve his or her potential.
ADHD is an extremely complex disorder, and Dr. Moller explains how to help your child overcome the symptoms of the disorder.
This is an edited version of an interview that aired on The Globe & Mail’s Morning Edition on Sept. 12, 2018.
Dr. Svetlana Savchenko: So, how does the ADHD diagnosis work?
The problem is, we don’t have a good definition of ADHD.
We know that ADHD has many different symptoms, and many different underlying causes.
We don’t know what the causes are, and that’s where our work comes in.
What we do know is that there is a connection between ADHD and other mental disorders like anxiety, depression, and anxiety disorders.
So, in the last 15 years or so, we have really been able to develop a diagnostic framework that we can use to help families understand ADHD, to help us diagnose it more accurately and help us manage it better.
Dr Susanne Koller: What’s the difference between ADHD, the diagnosis, and what’s the diagnosis?
The diagnosis is basically what a doctor sees, but in many ways, it’s different from what a parent sees.
The diagnosis of ADHD is basically a list of symptoms.
ADHD symptoms include: poor concentration, difficulty with social interactions, inability to pay attention, difficulty staying motivated, poor impulse control, difficulty controlling anger, impulsivity, and difficulty with schoolwork and homework.
Dr Svetlan Savchenko : And what does the diagnosis mean?
A parent with ADHD can also be diagnosed with a child who has a history of anxiety, a history or present diagnosis of conduct disorder, or a history that may lead to an emotional instability.
For children with conduct disorder or anxiety, the child can be referred to a professional, which is what is typically done in these situations.
Dr Bown: How does the child who gets ADHD get help?
The symptoms of ADHD are the same for all children with the disorder, so a child can have both ADHD and conduct disorder.
Dr Savchenko .
Dr Savchenka : And ADHD can be a spectrum disorder, which means that the severity of ADHD varies from child to child, but the disorder is the same.
ADHD and ADHD symptoms are the result of many different genetic and environmental factors, which explains why we have so many different diagnoses.
Dr Moller: So how do we diagnose ADHD?
The best way to diagnose ADHD is to talk to your child about what’s happening with the symptoms, how they’re functioning, and how to better manage them.
So you talk to the child, tell them what you’re doing, what the symptoms are, what their triggers are, talk to them about their friends and family and what they’re doing with them.
And you see if you can get them to change their behavior.
You see if they’re being distracted or if they feel more anxious or if their energy level is low.
If you see any of these patterns, then you’re treating it.
You’re showing them the way to be better.
So how can we help them?
If we’re able to identify a child with ADHD, we can help them to do better in school and with school activities.
We can help to develop coping strategies for their ADHD.
And if they do all of this, we might be able to improve their self-esteem, too.
Dr Koller : If your child has ADHD, what do they need to do to improve?
A lot of parents feel like they’re struggling to understand the disorder and what the problems are.
But a lot of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder have problems with school and in school life.
So they may be very self-conscious about the way they’re learning and the way the learning is going.
They might be feeling nervous, irritable, depressed, or even anxious, and some children with this disorder may also be depressed.
But if your child is not struggling with their ADHD symptoms, then they should feel confident in their ability to manage them in school activities and in their interactions with others.
Dr Fekete: What if I can’t help my child?
What can I do to help my children?
Dr Fecke : So the first step is to be aware that ADHD