Spotting The Signs Of ADHD

There's nothing unusual about a toddler who would rather leap from the sofa than sit quietly and read a book. However, if your child is a whirlwind of constant activity you may have begun to wonder if he is simply an age-appropriate active toddler or whether he may be suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Read on to learn more about spotting the signs of ADHD in your child.

boy yelling

What is ADHD?

ADHD is a common behavioural disorder which affects between 3 percent and 5 percent of the population. Health professionals have split the disorder into three groups: inattentive ADHD [also referred to as ADD]; hyperactive-impulsive ADHD; and combined ADHD, in which a child has both inattentive and hyperactive symptoms. ADHD can usually be diagnosed between 3 and 7 years of age, although in most cases it is easier to accurately diagnose older children.

What are the symptoms?

The normal behaviour range of toddlers varies greatly between children, with some being very active and others very subdued. A child's behaviour only becomes a cause for concern when it begins to affect his relationships with others and or interferes with his performance at school or pre-school. While it is very difficult to diagnose in young children, your child may have ADHD if they are experiencing several of the following symptoms, and those symptoms have been present for at least 6 months.

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Signs of inattention:

  • Unable to sit still
  • Short attention span [less than 7-9 minutes]
  • Very easily distracted
  • Difficulty listening to others
  • Slow to learn

Signs of hyperactivity:

  • Constantly in motion, even in situations where it is inappropriate
  • Often fidgets
  • Frequently clumsy

Signs of impulsivity:

  • Accident-prone
  • Reckless -- may dash into the road without looking
  • Seems unable to share toys or take turns
  • Behaves aggressively towards other children
  • Destructive
  • Lacks self-control
  • Dislikes playing with other children
  • Lashes out when angry

Next: What causes ADHD? >>

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Comments on "ADHD: Is your child hyperactive or just an ordinary toddler?"

cindy May 16, 2013 | 8:13 AM

My daughter is 10 months old and almost seems to bump her head on the floor, but does not. Is it a problem

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