Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) Essay

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“ ADHD, a disorder beginning in childhood, characterized by a persistent inability to sit

still, focus attention on specific tasks, and control impulses,” contributed by Michael Woods to

Microsoft Encarta Encyclopedia. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is one of the most

common mental disorders of childhood. Many children grow out of ADHD by adolescent or

adult years, but many do not. Studies show ADHD in adulthood is more severe and may cause

long term effects.

Diagnosing ADHD is very difficult, because most children are inattentive, hyperactive, and

impulsive at least some of the time. When diagnosing there is no blood test, or written test to

determine if ADHD is present. All there is are
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Gretchen

LeFever’s research found that 8% to 10% of children in second through fifth grades routinely

took ADHD medication in school during 1995-1996 school year. LeFever also conducted

another study which she examined records of student enrolled in the second through fifth grade

once again, but she chose two specific cities this time, Portsmouth and Virginia Beach. She chose

these two cities, because they are the most diverse cities in Virginia, Portsmouth is a small, urban,

poor, mostly black district, while Virginia Beach, Virginia is a larger, more wealthy, and mostly

white district. LeFever and her researchers found that ADHD medication was used three times as

many boys as with girls and twice as many whites as blacks. The researchers also found that the

use of medication increased as the children aged. By fifth grade, 19% to 20% of white boys

received ADHD medication.

Scientists do not know what causes ADHD, however, they have discredited many theories

that ADHD was a result from minor head injuries or undetectable brain damage due to infections

or complications during birth. Another theory blamed the consumption of refined sugar and food

additives, a study was done and it showed that very few ADHD children benefited from a
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