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Understanding ADHD: Causes

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What actually causes Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

 Over the years, the exact causes of ADHD have been unclear. However, genetics is generally known to be a major cause in most cases, although, other factors may contribute as well.

Genetics and ADHD

genetic-testing-300x199Research studies by Thapar et al, 2006; and Faraone et al, 2005 revealed that genetics could be a likely cause of ADHD. This indicates that ADHD has strong genetic ties. In other words, ADHD could be passed from parents to children through genes.

Twin studies also revealed that parents and siblings of children with ADHD are four to five times more likely to have the disorder as compared to people who are not related to someone with ADHD. This means that a child with ADHD may not be the only one with the disorder in the family.

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Other factors that could contribute to the development of ADHD include the following

  • The chemical imbalance of the brain. This inhibits the brain from performing its ‘executive functions’ such as problem solving, planning, memory recall, attention and focus.Alcohol_in_pregnancy_copy
  • Premature birth
  • Low birth weight
  • Brain damage before or after birth
  • Alcohol consumption during pregnancy
  • Smoking and misuse of drugs during pregnancy
  • Exposure to toxic lead at a tender age
  • Family environment. A dysfunctional family may increase the chances of a child developing ADHD

 

Remember to follow me on twitter @DrMorayoJimoh for more interesting updates on #LetstalkaboutADHD


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Understanding ADD/ADHD

Multiethnic Arms Raised Holding ADHD

When you hear ADD or ADHD, what comes to your mind?

Well, throughout the month of June, I shall be sharing very interesting information about ADD/ADHD such as what ADD/ADHD means, myths and facts about ADD/ADHD, types, causes, signs/characteristics, diagnosis, prevalence, management, clinical interventions, parenting tips, adult ADD/ADHD and successful people with ADHD. I bet you’re wondering how someone with ADHD can become successful in life right?  Trust me, it’s going to be an interesting month.

What is ADD/ADHD???

ADD is an acronym for Attention Deficit Disorder, while ADHD represents Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Let’s break this down a little bit:

A-      Attention refers to the ability or will to keep the mind on something in particular i.e being able to focus on ADHDsomething, usually for a period of time.

D-      Deficit means an inadequacy, insufficiency or lack of the ability to perform a given task.

H-      Hyperactivity simply means activity level which is above normal range.

D-      Disorder refers to a mental or physical interruption of normal functioning.

 

ADD/ADHD is a chronic neurodevelopmental disorder which results in difficulty sustaining attention, problems with executive functions (ability to plan) and inability to control certain behaviours.

ADD/ADHD affects academic performance and social relationships and it is one of the most common childhood disorders which can span through adolescence and adulthood.

Young, sad boy sitting at desk over piece of paper with pencil in hand. Looking at camera, front view

There have been quite a number of myths about ADD/ADHD, am sure you’ve heard about some also. In the next article, we shall be checking out some interesting myths and facts about ADD/ADHD.

Kindly follow me @DrMorayoJimoh and let’s talk about ADHD