Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by Malika, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Okay, this is an old chestnut but... I watched a programme here on TV last night about ADHD children, which was quite interesting. As usual, I recognised my own J in the descriptions - children who find it difficult to tolerate frustration, who are aggressive with other children and fascinated by fighting generally, who are hyperactive, etc. But, the doctor who specialises in ADHD whom they had on the show said at one point, in answer to a question about what differentiated turbulent children from children with ADHD, that ADHD kids cannot sit still for an hour, for example, listening to stories and that "a hyperactive child cannot calm himself."
    Maybe the good doctor was just being not strictly scientific with his words. But my son would be capable of sitting still for long periods listening to stories - though he sucks his thumb and twists on a little "security cloth" he has (and he has always done this when sitting listening) and sits still and concentrates at school like all the other kids. The psychomotricien he sees says that he thinks J really fights to concentrate, that it is against his nature, but that he succeeds in doing so - as though he is very high functioning within his disability.
    I would be very interested to hear others' experiences of hyperactivity and concentration. In the aim of, somewhere, some time, understanding what is going on with my son :)
  2. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I just shake my head sometimes at the misperceptions "us" ADD/ADHDers have to put up with.
    Because it really is not about a deficit of ability to pay attention... it's far more about having difficulty managing distraction and managing focus.

    Break the concentration and focus of an ADD/ADHD child, and you may end up with a major reaction - not because they are "all over the place" but because you broke the stream of concentration, broke the "flow".

    Some ADHDers don't get to that "flow" point - their ability to manage distraction is so low, the distractions always intrude. Maybe those kind "can't sit still for an hour"?
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2012
  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I thought there was an attentive type and inattentive type- not sure but I think I heard that from difficult child's old psychiatrist.
  4. keista

    keista New Member

    I know two children with pretty serious ADHD. I call it serious only because you can identify it easily after spending only 10 minutes with them. Neither is violent or aggressive. Neither can sustain focus even in pleasurable activities. One can't even play video games for very long.

    ADHD has a very broad spectrum of manifestation. I also think that doctors label too many young kids as ADHD only because they don't know what is really going on. Like it's a good starting point for medications and evaluations.
  5. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Yes, there are two major sub-types... biggest difference being the lack of "obvious hyperactivity" in the inattentive type. The other isn't called "attentive type", though... it's either plain-jane ADHD, or ADHD-hyperactive (there's probably a couple more terms used).

    Nobody with ADD/ADHD is ever considered "attentive"!

    On average, more boys than girls get the ADHD label... and girls more often get ADD or ADHD-inattentive type. But it can go either way.

    The interesting thing with ADHD-inattentive is that they usually still are hyper on some level... for K2, it happens in the muscles of the lower face - rather than in the gross-motor-skills group of muscles.
  6. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    I've seen children with severe ADHD focus intently on things they are interested in. To the exclusion of everything else.

    I would have been diagnosis'd as mixed - hyperactive and inattentive - I drove my parents nuts. But as it turns out I don't actually have ADHD.

    I do believe it is more prevalent than it was 35 years ago when I was a child. I also think it is over-diagnosis'd. And, though my son has been diagnosis'd ADHD, I think there's something different going on...
  7. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Yes, Step - that's the hyper-focus mode, and us ADHDers can be really good at that. It's a big advantage if you're an artist or an inventor...

    Pretty much all ADHDers have trouble managing focus. The rest of the attributes are just things that "can" go along with ADHD.

    And yes... ADHD is one of the most mis-diagnosed conditions, in my opinion. Too many people get the diagnosis, where it doesn't apply... and too many people do NOT get the diagnosis when it really is there. It cuts both ways.
  8. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    We had one doctor who said my kid didn't have ADHD because he could play his gameboy for hours. The psychiatrist said this was a bunch of bs, that ADHD kids could pay attention to the the things that were interesting to them. They have great difficult forcing themselves to focus on what is not so inherently stimulating or interesting. So I think the fact that you son could pay attention to stories is not a all inconsistent with ADHD.
  9. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    The doctor might be partly right on THIS part.
    ADHDers can learn to focus, and learn to manage distraction, at least to some extent (some of us need a medications-boost to do this, others don't).
    But... it comes at an expense.... realy burns up brain-power.
    Which, I'm guessing, is part of where J's rages and such come from.
    He's already put SO much effort into holding it all together, doing what is expected, and then, at some point, his "tank" is empty, and life hasn't "shut down yet, and so... transition points and minor differences of "opinion" (i.e. J vs. Mom) become huge and ugly. This isn't the "real" J. It's the "burned out" J? In which case... what does he need so that he doesn't have to spend every ounce of effort on a daily basis?
  10. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Thanks for all your input. I remain confused by this... quite a few professionals now have said that they are puzzled by J because he seems to tick the boxes for ADHD but is able to concentrate - I think even on things that do not interest him but on which there is social pressure to concentrate - much better than is typically seen with ADHD children. Also he becomes physically quite still at such times, whereas it has again often been said to me that "other" ADHD kids are twisting and turning in their seats, for example, in comparable situations. If we had a system that concentrated on naming skills deficits rather than an overall condition, this would in a sense be more helpful (I know, I know, like that you do not get accommodations and services) because it is clear and observable that he has difficulty managing frustration and is very impulsive, for example.
  11. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    I'm going to split hairs, here, and revert to the "old" terms.
    Back when I got my diagnosis (as an adult), they used ADD and ADHD as separate terms. ADD is now usually referred to as ADHD-inattentive, but it isn't quite an exact match.

    In ADHD, the overriding problem is hyperactivity. Not high-energy. Hyper. The "I can't control my body" kind of hyper. The "I can't think unless I'm moving" kind of hyper. This was GFGbro.

    In ADD, the overriding problem is paying appropriate attention. This is more me and my kids... We're out of focus when we should be attending well, and hyper-focussed at other times, sometimes well applied and sometimes not.

    In either case... it is frequent to have executive function challenges (impulsivity, for example, and problems with planning and organization and so on). It's also frequent to have "other things" going on.
  12. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    Well, ya know... ADHD is a spectrum just like a many other kinds of illnesses... Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)... Bipolar... even food poisoning can be "mild" to "severe"...
  13. InsaneCdn

    InsaneCdn Well-Known Member

    Absolutely. But whereas many of the more "medical" type issues are a line from left-to-right... developmental spectrum disorders are more of a 360 circle around a central stake. Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), ADHD, Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD)... are all like this. You can be polar opposites and both be on that spectrum. The variations are almost endless. (Someone else said a circle doesn't even describe it - you have to go to 3D!)
  14. AnnieO

    AnnieO Shooting from the Hip

    I'm not even sure 3D would work... You know those action balloons in the comics with the spikes, that say stuff like BLAM! and POW! ??? Make THAT 3D...