How to know if your Child has ADHD?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) prevalence in Singapore is estimated to be between 1.7% and 16%. This complex neurodevelopment disorder is often missed when children are younger because the signs are assumed to be a personality trait. In Singapore, the average age when children are diagnosed with ADHD is seven years. 

Teenagers with ADHD often have elaborate symptoms, which vary from one person to another. However, delayed diagnosis often leaves parents realizing that some of the signs of ADHD were evident when they were children. Early diagnosis means your child starts getting therapy early, especially behavioural management. 

Learn more about signs of ADHD in children: https://www.assumptionlearning.com/attention-issues-adhd

Is your child self-centered? 

While most children exhibit signs of selfishness, especially when one is an only child, those with ADHD have a self-focused behaviour that should be concerning for parents. The best way to tell if your child is possessive or if he has ADHD is to look out for other signs linked to his self-centeredness.

Signs of ADHD in children are progressive. For example, a self-focused child will progress to forcefully interrupting when your attention is elsewhere. They do so to ensure they get all your attention. Additionally, they have trouble waiting their turn. 

Patience is a virtue they don’t seem to possess of even attempt to learn because they seem to have a “me first” attitude. If your child has these successive symptoms, it is best to consider the possibility he has ADHD. 

Emotional outburst

Children with ADHD have trouble keeping their emotions in check. Your child may have anger outbursts without a logical explanation for it. For younger children, these emotional outbursts are assumed to be temper tantrums. While this may also be true, it often masks signs of ADHD in children, hence delaying diagnosis. 

Failure to sit still

Does your child fidget a lot? Children with ADHD hardly ever sit still. They often want to run around, and when forced to sit, they squirm in their chair. At a glance, this looks like normal behaviour in children. However, attention issues in children are a core consideration when doctors diagnose children with ADHD. 

Failure to complete tasks

As children grow older, they develop an interest in various things. However, most of them prefer certain activities that they participate in for a longer duration and often to their completion. One of the signs of ADHD in children is the loss of interest in tasks. If your child starts a project, chore, or even his homework but easily gets distracted to do something else, then there is a possibility he has ADHD. 

Avoids activities that require mental effort

ADHD highlights attention issues in children. If you have not been observant of the kind of activities your child enjoys and shows signs of ADHD in children, then it is time to analyze the activities he prefers. If he avoids activities that require mental effort, such as his schoolwork, he may have ADHD. 

Difficulty following instructions

Children naturally make mistakes, and it is expected that they will not follow instructions to the letter. However, children with ADHD struggle even more with instructions, especially those that require planning. Some of the mistakes may seem careless, indicate laziness or lack of intelligence. However, such mistakes are beyond your child’s control. 

Unfortunately, a child without DHD may exhibit some of these signs as well. It is, therefore, critical for you to get a proper diagnosis for a professional. It is, however, important to consider the possibility of ADHD instead of assuming your child is just going through a phase. When he receives help early, your child will learn how to handle the symptoms well enough to lead a normal life.