Understanding Mental Illnesses 5: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

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Description

Attention deficit hyperactive disorder, commonly known as ADHD, is a much misunderstood disorder, in most cases caused by genetics with symptoms (behaviour problems) resulting from difficulties with the executive functions of the brain (e.g., problem solving, working memory, inhibition control). It is one of the most common disorders of childhood, but in most cases continues to affect adolescents and adults. ADHD symptoms are often categorized by distractibility, hyperactivity, poor impulse control, and forgetfulness that interfere with the ability to go about daily activities. For young people living with ADHD, it can be more difficult to delay or inhibit some actions, which can lead to interrupting others, blurting out answers, mouthing off to parents or teachers, or engaging in risky activities. This activity explores the causes, symptoms, and treatments of ADHD.


Task

1. ADHD symptoms are often categorized by distractibility, hyperactivity, poor impulse control, and forgetfulness, which interfere with the ability to go about daily activities. Learn more by checking out this resource, ADHD Information for Teens.

2. Although ADHD is characterized by difficulties with executive functioning, many of us struggle with some or all of the above characteristics to some degree. Think about the things that you can do to help make it easier for you to fight these tendencies and make a list. You can choose all of the above characteristics, or choose one that you have particular difficulty controlling (for instance, if you are easily distracted, make a list of things that you will do to help you focus).

3. Given the rates of ADHD, it is likely that someone in your class is impacted by this disorder. You could also create a list of tips for working together as a class to incorporate different learning styles and attention spans. Refer to 'Tips to Try' in the Task 1 resource if you get stuck.

4. Share your list(s) through the thread in Class Discussions set up for this assignment.


Learning Objectives

  • Learn about the complex causes and symptoms of ADHD
  • Explore popular treatments for ADHD
  • Explore strategies to manage time, attention and impluses as well as how to support students living with ADHD