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"This child does not stop still", "he does not think what he is doing", "there is no way for him to study". All of these expressions can be much more than descriptions of the attitudes of a child, a teenager, or even a hyperactive adult. They can be symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. A syndrome that often goes unnoticed by parents, but if treated in time, it can prevent school failure or at least improve performance in class, as well as improve other aspects of the person's life. Sometimes it turns out that it is not that children do not want to study, it is that they cannot, because they cannot concentrate. It is proven that hyperactivity is a disorder and that its presence is related to other variables such as a subtle but sufficient deficit in the functioning of the frontal lobe of the brain, which regulates behavior, among other functions.
Although there is a growing awareness of this problem and it is detected to a greater extent by schools and teachers, there is still much to do. As Gabriel González de la Torre, a neuropsychologist specializing in brain damage and Attention Neuropsychology and coordinator of the Neuropsychology group of the Official College of Psychology of Cádiz explains, it is important to start working with the child as soon as possible. Although she states that it is never late, she explains that when time passes, complications usually arise, ranging from problems at school to criminal behavior; "It can have very negative consequences, especially in the long term, because as failures occur, the child or young person begins to believe that they are not capable of doing things differently and their negative behavior is reinforced." Therefore, he urges you to pay close attention to these issues and seek advice as soon as possible. He adds that "from the age of four, hyperactivity begins to be detected and that six is usually a critical age."
The signal that most clearly sets off the alarm is problems in school and learning difficulties, both due to poor performance and attitude. But to diagnose attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder, as González de la Torre explains, attitudes must occur in all areas, also on the street and at home. But there are other issues, hyperactivity is characterized by the presence of poor attention, poor concentration, impulsivity and hyperkinesia, that is, excess movements. They are usually children who cannot wait, who touch everything, who suffer small accidents when they rush into their actions. There are three differentiated types: the predominantly inattentive, the predominantly hyperkinetic and the one that combines both behaviors, which is the most common.
Treatment consists of psychotherapy and added drug treatment when necessary. What is sought in therapy is to give the child tools to know how to self-control his behavior and, to the parents, guidelines to help him and know how to deal with the situation. Thus, for example, relaxation techniques and breath control and even computer programs for cognitive training are used, especially to promote the development of concentration. It also works on the development of social skills and, in matters such as respecting the turn to speak. Parents must learn, among other things, how to communicate with their child. For example, you should talk to him looking into his eyes or apply the so-called "time out", that is, avoid scolding the child at the moment the problem arises and wait until both are calmer and withdraw him, at that moment to a different place , to which the events have occurred. Previously, it was thought that with adulthood, hyperactivity disappeared, but now professionals point out that between 30 and 60 percent of children who were hyperactive, continue to be in their adulthood. Furthermore, it is estimated that four percent of the adult population presents some symptoms of this type. It is something assimilated in the United States and Europe, but now beginning to be paid attention in Spain, as Gabriel González de la Torre reviews. He explains that hyperkinesia usually disappears but that these people have problems to focus on work, they need to change activities frequently and they may even present anxiety or mood problems; "It is not difficult to find them among sensation seekers and extreme sports fans."08/20/2007 02:50 Noelia Hidalgo. Cádiz newspaper.
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