ADD in Children - Causes, Symptoms, & Info

Learn what causes ADD in children and the resulting symptoms.

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  1. What is ADD
  2. Symptoms of ADD in Children
  3. Causes of ADD
  4. Help for ADD in Children

What is ADD

Attention Deficit Disorder, or ADD/ADHD, is a well-known childhood developmental issue characterized by a number of symptoms, most notably impulsive behavior, hyperactivity, and an inability to concentrate. The signs and symptoms usually appear before age seven.

Symptoms of Childhood ADD 

 ADD has a variety of symptoms. Children with ADD are often hyperactive, easily distracted, and have difficulty following directions and concentrating. In addition, they may bore easily and have trouble starting and finishing projects. Children with ADD often struggle with feelings of frustration and are prone to irritability or short-temperedness. Children with this disorder often engage in excessive talking and other disruptive behaviors that are problematic for them in school settings.

Causes of ADD

Exact causes of this disorder are unknown. However, ADHD has a strong genetic component. Genes that control neurotransmitters in the brain are different in people with ADHD. Those with the disorder typically have imbalanced levels of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain. There are other factors that can contribute to ADD including improper diet.

Although no studies have definitively shown food additives cause ADD, research suggests they may be linked to exacerbated symptoms in those who already have it, particularly children. Some of the biggest suspected culprits are food dyes and preservatives.

Help for ADD

Symptoms of ADD are greatly improved through diet and regular exercise. Vigorous exercise helps expend excess energy while simultaneously calming the body. Eating a variety of healthy, fresh foods and avoiding sugar and processed foods helps moderate behavior.

Other things that help include a good night's sleep, daily routines and a set schedule. Kids with ADD need structure to thrive in school and manage daily living skills effectively. Adequate sleep helps balance the mood and boosts productivity.