Attention Deficit Disorder

Essay by AshleyOSU December 2004

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Attention Deficit Disorder is a neurological syndrome that is usually genetically transmitted. It is characterized by distractibility, impulsivity, and restlessness. People with ADD tend to think quickly and creatively. They are usually smart, intuitive, and full of new ideas and plans. Sometimes they procrastinate, having trouble staying on task, completing projects, or following through on ideas. Sometimes they underachieve in school or unintentionally disrupt social occasions. All these problems relate to their brain having trouble focusing attention and regulating impulses (Hallowell & Ratey, 1994, p3).

Treatment includes education, structure, coaching, and medication. With treatment, the prognosis is usually good. ADD has different degrees of severity. The degree goes from mild to severe. It's hard to tell at what point normal, everyday distractibility or scatteredness leaves off and ADD begins for a person with mild ADD. At the severe end of the scale we see children who cannot function outside a hospital and adults who are incarcerated or who cannot hold jobs or stay in relationships.

ADD occurs in different degrees of intensity ( Hallowell & Ratey, 1994, p8).

A number of theorists and researchers have postulated a relationship between parenting and the course and outcome of ADD. Some have investigated parental psychopathology and dysfunctional parenting as risk factors for childhood ADD, expression of ADD, and ADD problem behaviors as sources of parenting stress. Parenting is a highly complex task, that an interplay among parent, child, and environmental factors influences parent-child interactions and child outcomes. The focus of child outcomes implies an assumption that interventions with parents would be valued if they had an effect on child outcome. However, the stress experienced by some parents of adolescents with ADD is considerable. Relief of that stress would be worthwhile even if it did not have an appreciable immediate effect on adolescent behavior...