ClickCease What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a challenge to diagnose

What is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

Trouble focusing and occasionally misbehaving is completely normal in childhood, however, children with ADHD do not grow out of these behaviors as they get older.

In fact, 60% of children with ADHD in the US become adults with ADHD. Approximately 4.4% of the adult population (about 8 million people) in the United States has ADHD. Children with ADHD commonly have trouble paying attention, controlling impulsive behaviors or are overly active to the point of distraction.


The symptoms of ADHD can cause difficulty at school, at home, or with friends.
Children with ADHD tend to daydream a lot, frequently forget or lose things, have a hard time sitting still and fidget, talk continuously, have a hard time resisting temptation, and often have difficulty getting along with others.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a challenge to diagnose

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a challenge to diagnose

There are three different types of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder:

ADHD types are defined based on the way the symptoms present themselves.

1. Predominantly Inattentive:

It is difficult for the individual to organize or finish a task, to pay attention to details, or to follow instructions or conversations. The person with this type of ADHD is easily distracted or forgets details of daily routines, has a hard time following directions, and has a difficult time organizing a task to completion.

2. Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive:

The person is often very restless, runs, jumps, or climbs (especially in small children), and generally has difficulty sitting still even for short periods of time. This may include fidgeting and excessive talking. They may also be extremely impulsive and have a hard time by interrupting and grabbing things from others and may speak at inappropriate times. A person with such impulsiveness may have more accidents and injuries than other people.

3. Combined:

Symptoms of the above two types.
These symptoms may change over time and move from one type to another.

What are the causes of ADHD?

No one really knows the causes of ADHD but current research indicates genetics plays an important role. Studies of other possible causes and risk factors include brain injury, exposure or ingestion of lead paint, maternal use of alcohol and tobacco during pregnancy, premature delivery, and low birth weight.
It is important to note that there is no evidence to support the cause of ADHD being related to eating too much sugar, watching too much TV, or social and environmental factors such as poverty or family situations. For more information about the cause(s) and risk factors of ADHD, please visit the National Resource Center on ADHD or the National Institute of Mental Health


There is no single test to diagnose ADHD. Many other problems, like anxiety, depression, and certain types of learning disabilities, can have similar symptoms.
The American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fifth edition (DSM-5), is used by mental health professionals to help diagnose ADHD. This diagnostic standard helps ensure that people are appropriately diagnosed and treated for ADHD. Using the same standard across communities will help determine how many children have ADHD, and how public health is impacted by this condition.
For more detailed information on diagnosing ADHD please see and speak to your medical professional. The evidence is clear that the symptoms of ADHD interfere with or reduce the quality of social interactions, school performance, and work functioning.


In most cases, ADHD is best treated with a combination of behavior therapy and medication. There is no single treatment for every child, however, appropriate treatment plans will include close monitoring and professional follow-up.  Monitoring and follow-up is important to provide changes to therapy and/or medications needed along the path to treatment for ADHD.

Get Help!

To find out whom to speak to in your area, you can contact the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities by visiting or calling 1-800-695-0285.
To ensure your child reaches his or her full potential, it is very important to get help for ADHD as early as possible.

Prescription Medications used to treat

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Stimulants Approved to Treat ADHD

A class of drugs called psychostimulants (stimulants) have been used to effectively treat ADHD for over 25 years. These medicines help those with ADHD to focus their thoughts and ignore distractions. Stimulant medications are effective in 70-80% of patients.
Psychostimulants are used to treat both moderate and severe ADHD and may be helpful in children, adolescents, and adults who are having difficulty with ADHD symptoms. Some stimulants are approved for use in children over age 3, while others are approved for children over age 6.

A list of stimulant drugs to treat ADHD includes:

• Adderall and Adderall XR
• Concerta
• Dexedrine
• Focalin and Focalin XR
• Metadate CD and Metadate ER
• Methylin and Methylin ER
• Ritalin, Ritalin SR, Ritalin LA
• Vyvanse
• Daytrana
• Quillivant XR

Nonstimulant Drugs Approved to Treat ADHD

In cases where stimulants don’t work or cause unpleasant side effects, nonstimulants might help. The first nonstimulant medication approved by the FDA was Strattera for use by children, adolescents, and adults. The FDA also approved a second nonstimulant drug, Intuniv, for children and teens between ages 6 and 17 and recently approved the non-stimulant Kapvay for use alone or in combination with a stimulant to enhance effectiveness. These medications can all improve concentration and impulse control.
If you take any of these prescription medications and lack health insurance or pay full price for your medication our prescription drug discount card can help save you money. To find the best price at a pharmacy near you, please visit our website and use our drug pricing tool and pharmacy locator. EasyDrugCard has been providing discounts on all prescription medications at local pharmacies since 2006.
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