Attention Deficit Disorder AD/ HD

Attention Deficit Disorder AD/ HD

This is a metal disorder that mainly develops in children of between the age of six to twelve.  It affects around 7% of children and is diagnosed when its symptoms persist for over six months. It can be described a condition of children being hyperactive, low attention and acting impulsively in a way that is inappropriate for their age (High Point Hospital Symposium on ADD, Bloomingdale, & Gralnick Foundation, 1988). It cause has not been established yet. Not only does it affect children but adolescents as well. It does affect boys more than it affects girls, who often get to adulthood with the condition.

Attention deficit disorder is caused by inheritance of the condition. This is at least in 75% of the cases. This means that it is genetically transferred down generations. The gene LPNH3 is mainly associated with transferring this condition. When present, it takes the condition from parents to children. It is argued that this condition mainly develops in stressed women, through natural selection (Moragne, 1996). This enables their children survive the unfriendly conditions that their mothers prepare them for before they are born.  This makes the children have some very quick and noticeably queer explanatory behavior. It is also argued that women with this condition are naturally attracted to men that are risk takers. This makes the gene’s frequency increase. This results to it becoming dysfunctional due to the combination. This way, natural selection provides people with this condition a survival advantage. The disorder in individuals that obtain it genetically is very useful to them especially if they are born in risky environment. This enables them to react fast to danger, be able to fight their way through to getting what they rightfully deserve and somebody is denying them. Despite this, it is disadvantageous to them as they become problematic when dealing with people and their level of attention is low.

Another cause of the attention deficit condition is the society in which a child is born and brought up. A society that subjects children to emotional abuse and violence causes them to develop this disorder. This could be due to events like war, hatred and witchcraft that could make children get to see the repercussions of the same early in their age, like death. It could also follow when children are brought up by people that do not love them, who mistreat them, causing them psychological and emotional torture. A society that takes their children to school too early, in classes where there are older students may have their children being diagnosed with this condition (Brown, 2005). This, unlike other cases, may not be actually there but caused by the fact that the child’s brain is not as developed as the classmates’. Too high academic expectations on children by their parents, teachers or themselves could also lead to thus condition. This is because it gives the children pressure in the mind and a feeling of fear for failure. Sometimes it causes them more confusion that focus in studies as it is expected of them .It is associated with scolding children when they do not meet expectations, instead of encouraging them and creating a positive attitude in them.

A child’s or teenager’s environment can also cause the development of this condition. A child’s environment when the mother is pregnant can lead to the development of this condition through its exposure to alcohol and tobacco. This creates in the fetus a fetal alcohol spectrum disorder that is associated with development of the attention deficit disorder and problems with the central nervous system respectively. Infection of mothers during pregnancy and taking of some drugs like aspirin has been associated with causing this condition in children. Low birth weight, infections when still very young and being born prematurely exposes children to acquiring this condition. In some children, it occurs when their mothers, during pregnancy, take certain food colorings. Artificial food sweetener aspartame and sugar in general, when taken too much by children of below six years lowers their level of attention.

Path physiology explains how the condition is in the brain. It generally have to do with dysfunctioning of the frontal lobe, involving the striatum too. It explains that children with this condition have low brain volume, especially on the left sided prefrontal cortex. These people have an abnormal response to stimulus by the dopamine system. This is due to the low arousal thresh hold associated with a high number of dopamine transporters (Hallowell & Ratey, 1995). This low arousal is the one that causes hyperactivity and lower than normal level of attention in people with this condition. Te high count of dopamine transporters is an adaptation to increased stimuli, like a harsh environment. These abnormalities have also been reported to be present in the nicotinergic and adrenergic pathways. It is argued that symptoms occur due to failure of proper functioning of brain processes that control and regulate the way one carries on their daily activities. The signs best manifest themselves after the major brain developments are over, so that they are best seen in adolescence and adulthood.

People that have the attention deficit disorder mainly have four signs; low level of attention, hyperactivity, impulsitivity and being disruptive. Hyperactivity, sometimes simply described as restlessness is characterized by one being in motion most of the time, fidgeting when expected to be calm, inability to handle quiet tasks, being involved in some activity with everything they find around them, talking all the time and when alone they have to be in an activity like singing. Low attention is shown through daydreaming and getting easily distracted, having difficulty in following instructions, not paying attention when being talked to, getting bored with tasks after a short time, having difficulty organizing things and one’s activities, difficulty learning something new, forgetting a lot, like where one placed an item shortly after doing it and processing information and reasoning out issues in a substandard way or taking unusually long (High Point Hospital Symposium on ADD, Bloomingdale & Swanson, 1989). Impulsitivity is manifested in the way one is impatient, being slow to anger and sometimes over reacting about tiny issues, disrupting others when talking and difficulty waiting for ones turn, like queuing in a bank really getting in one’s nerves. In general, these people have difficulty relating with people. This gives them a feeling of rejection and not belonging, making them do things to help get these feelings off their chest. These are mainly the people that get involved in criminal activities like robbery, drug abuse and truancy. They however have very good concentration levels in the activity they get to like, especially that which physically involves them. As children, they are slow learners, have a poor handwriting and their development of speech takes long.

Attention deficit disorder unfortunately does come associated with other disorders in at least two thirds of victims (Phelan, 1993). These include substance use disorders that have to do with use of drugs like alcohol and cocaine. This is caused by an altered reward pathway in the brain. Mood disorders, especially characterized by deep depression and bipolar disorders especially in adults, restless legs syndrome that mainly occurs in people with iron deficiency, sleep disorders that are characterized by insomnia or sleep that is too deep so that waking up becomes difficult. Medication for the attention deficit disorder could also bring about sleep disorders. Vigilance disorder is also known to come with the attention deficit disorder. This characterized by lack of setlines. The victim has difficulty in concentrating, paying attention, keeps on yawning and stretching and appears to be too attentive, as if they are waiting for something to happen so that they can react. Opposite defiant disorder is also associated with this. This is where the victim is totally unsocial, so that they are very edgy, violent and engage in behaviors like stealing and lying. Obsessive compulsive disorder also appears often in people that have the attention deficit disorder.

Attention deficit disorder is sometimes explained to have been created, rather than naturally appeared. Its definition is based on the expectation of the society in question. A society that does hunting a lot will really appreciate a person that reacts very fast as they are able to make the most kills, while in an environment that requires people to be composed and quiet, this person will be termed as sick. This condition can be managed through medication, especially for small children. Counseling can also be done especially in people in whom it develops because of the environment in which they are brought up, like one that subjects them to mistreatment. Behavioral therapies have also proven useful. Once efforts towards managing these conditions are made, cases of the same are reduced and adults know how to prevent their children from acquiring the condition (Fisher & Beckley, 1999).












Brown, T. E. (2005). Attention deficit disorder: The unfocused mind in children and adults. New Haven: Yale University Press.

Fisher, B. C., & Beckley, R. A. (1999). Attention deficit disorder: Practical coping methods. Boca Raton: CRC Press.

Hallowell, E. M., & Ratey, J. J. (1995). Driven to distraction: Recognizing and coping with attention deficit disorder from childhood through adulthood. New York: Simon & Schuster.

High Point Hospital Symposium on ADD, Bloomingdale, L. M., & Gralnick Foundation. (1988). Attention deficit disorder: Volume 3. Oxford [England: Pergamon Press.

High Point Hospital Symposium on ADD, Bloomingdale, L. M., & Swanson, J. M. (1989). Attention deficit disorder: Volume IV. Oxford: Pergamon Press.

Moragne, W. (1996). Attention deficit disorder. Brookfield, Conn: Millbrook Press.

Phelan, T. W. (1993). All about attention deficit disorder. Glen Ellyn, Ill: Child Management.