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What is ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder)?

ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) is the subgroup of ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity disorders): it has the same main characteristics, except the one important difference which is that children with ADD are not hyperactive like children with ADHD are.

Attention refers to our ability to continuously direct all our mental capacities to certain activity. So children with ADD lack that ability to continuously focus on one activity. Instead, their attention wanders off to a different subject, some different object or a completely different situation. One phrase that is commonly used to describe people with ADD is ‘creative dreamers’.

What is the cause of ADD?

Nowadays it’s generally accepted that our attention is something that is biologically determined which means it depends mainly on how our brain functions. Following that definition, ADD is considered to be genetic disorder in which the brain’s capacity to maintain attention is altered. There are also cases where ADD is not caused by strictly biological causes, but can also be attributed to bad family situation or bad parenting, or even there are some cases where the child's natural temperament is such that it’s interested in many various things at once or the child is very intelligent, so it quickly gets bored with repetitive stuff.

ADD, unlike ADHD, is mostly diagnosed during teen years when child shows lack of progress in school because its attention deficit is preventing it from focusing on school matters. Children with ADD are not overly impulsive or hyperactive as to be considered disobedient kids from early stages of development which leads to later ADHD diagnosis.

What are the main symptoms of ADD?

The main symptoms of attention deficit disorder are:

  1. Short attention span (the child is easily distracted from whichever activity is currently involved in);
  2. Distraction and inattention (the child seems absent from current situation and is easily distracted);
  3. Lack of persistency (the child will give up on any task very easily);
  4. Not being able to allocate time do different tasks accordingly;
  5. Child is unorganized;
  6. Child is hesitant and makes bad judgements and decisions;
  7. Child doesn’t learn from it’s own experience and
  8. Child has extremely short memory span.

When child is unable to focus, especially on the school tasks, it might be the case it suffers from so called ‘wandering attention’ which manifests through:

  1. Trouble handling details (for example, child would mix letters b and d, due to their similarity);
  2. Paying attention to irrelevant and side details or situations;
  3. Sleeping disorder (child has problems getting to sleep, or maintaining a constant sleep pattern);
  4. It’s attention lasts for a very short time (child quickly loses interest and attention to subject);
  5. Slowed-down attention (child is spending too much time paying attention to some irrelevant, out-of focus detail and can’t manage to follow the flow of information correctly);
  6. Oscillating attention (sometimes child has good attention and focus, but sometimes doesn’t);
  7. Visual and auditory distractibility (child is easily distracted with different irrelevant images and sounds) and
  8. Social distractibility (child cannot function fully in the group environment because it cannot focus it’s attention to a current happening).

Which options are available for ADD treatment?

Besides medication treatment which should be considered as a last alternative in the younger children, there are some common sense tips that can help a child to develop a better focus and improve it school success such as:

  1. Creating a constant everyday routine. For example, it’s extremely important that child has dedicated learning and practising hours each day at the same time.
  2. Creating positive habits. The child should learn to handle it’s own school tasks, homework, getting it’s things and books ready, keeping the room tidy... etc.
  3. Making a plan. The parents need to help the child organize it’s homework and learning structure and help him or her to stick to the plan.
  4. Learning to learn. Helping a child to master different quick learning techniques will surely improve its learning capability and school success, while at the same time different learning techniques can be adjusted to suit the child’s attention span.
  5. Award a child for its successes: The awards of course don’t have to be of material nature, a simple praise for the task well done will make child more eager to learn more and to improve itself.
  6. Taking an ADD natural supplement. Not all of the supplements are able to cure ADD. However, some supplements like Synaptol for instance, can help to reduce the symptoms of ADD. A review of synaptol is available on several sites that are proven to be credible by most health experts.

One more tip for the parents of the child with ADD

You have to remember that the child’s attention is not in it’s control, it’s a brain function that varies from person to person. That’s why it makes no sense in punishing or scolding a child for a poor school success because factors out of it’s control are contributing to its school performance.


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