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Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a disorder that occurs during the early development of children. It is whereby an individual has both attentional issues and experiences hyperactivity. Both of these behaviours occur separately and infrequently. They may start to occur earlier than seven years of age.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is one of the most studied psychiatric disorders in children. It is believed to affect approximately five percent of children around the world. This disorder may be chronic as it extends to the victim’s adulthood.
The symptoms of the disorder are usually similar to those of other disorder and this increases the risks of misdiagnosing it or missing it all together. The treatment of Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder requires proper training. Many clinicians have not received formal training for treating the adults suffering from the disorder and this is one of the drawbacks.
Adults and adolescents suffering from this disorder normally develop compensation mechanisms (accommodations) for their problems. A large number of populations around the world live successfully with the disorder. Some studies suggested that boys are more frequently diagnosed with the disorder than girls are.
However, it is disputable that this irregularity is caused by the subjective biasness of the teachers. ADHD may be managed using a combination of interventions. They range from medicine administration, lifestyle changes, counselling and behavioural modifications.
Toby has been diagnosed with Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, behaviour disorder and lack of decoding skills. This has caused him to have disruptive behaviour in class. He also has problems learning and does not complete assignments. Some of the other social problems that Toby experiences include being teased for being a short boy and wearing large glasses.
He is also over active and this makes students laugh at him and tease him even more. It is important that he receives help from the teachers and parents so that some of his behaviours (disruptive and inappropriate behaviour) can be minimized. This would also be important in order to ensure that he is able to learn and complete the assigned class work.
Issues faced by the student
Toby has been determined to have issues with decoding (lack of decoding skills). This is common in people suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. This is because the disorder is associated with major deficits in executive functions. The student lacks the ability to perform cognitive functions that are necessary to perform problem solving.
Research suggests that children suffering from the disorder are slow and experience more varied response speeds when it comes to performing tasks that require reasoning (decoding skills) (Shanahan, Yerys, & Willcutt, 2006).
Toby has been teased for being over active. This is one of the signs and symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. This is because the disorder is associated with impulsivity, inattention and hyperactivity. At times, it is difficult to determine the levels at which impulsivity, inattention and hyperactivity have exceeded the normal ranges.
Therefore, in order to determine that one is suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, it is important to observe the victim in different settings over a long time. This is whereby the degree of activity will be compared with those of other children of the same age as the victim. However, Toby’s behaviours have been determined to be similar to those shown by children suffering from ADHD. The other students have gone ahead to start teasing him for his differences.
Toby finds difficulty learning and finishing his class assignments. This could be due to inattentiveness that is a symptom of the disorder. This disorder usually cause children to be easily distracted and they seem to miss details and easily forget things. This causes them to switch from one activity to another one quite frequently such that they are not able to concentrate on one thing and complete it successfully. Since Toby has difficulty focussing on one task, he is not able to learn or finish his class assignments.
Such children also seem to daydreamers and are easily confused. They seem not to listen while they are being spoken to. They also have problems processing information as accurately as required. This is also often slow and this describes why the student has problems learning. Children suffering from such disorders usually have difficulty following instructions (Chronis, Jones, & Raggi, 2006).
Toby is said to be over active and this is one of the reasons he is having social problems. His classmates are teasing him for this reason. Children (students) suffering from such disorders show hyperactive-impulsive symptoms. This may be in the form of fidgeting and squirming in the seat.
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They may talk nonstop and are constantly in motion. These children are also seen dashing around and touching and playing around with almost anything that they see around. Due to the hyperactivity, such children have trouble sitting still. This may be in a classroom situation, at the dinner table or any other setting. In class, they also have problems performing quiet tasks because they are always playing around with things and in motion.
Strategies to be used to assist the child
There are various treatment interventions for children suffering from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Stimulant treatment is one of the treatment procedures for the disorder that involves medication. The pharmacodynamics and pharmacokinetics of the stimulant intervention have been determined earlier.
This was used to treatment of behavioural and cognitive issues in children in a classroom situation (American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry [AACAP], 2007). This lead to the development of Focalin, Metadate CD and Concerta.
Psychological interventions may also be used in the management of the disorder. Several studies have suggested that a combination of the pharmacological and behavioural treatment of the symptoms. This has also been used to treat some of the impairments on the social and academic functions of the children.
Therefore, a patient’s treatment plan should be prepared as the teachers and the parents prepare to begin the treatment of the student (child). It should include a child and parental psychoeducation on the various intervention options. They include both medication and behavioural therapy.
A physician normally performs psychoeducation. It is whereby the parents and the child are educated about ADHD. The parents are normally educated on the challenges to encounter as their child develops. They are also advised on how to improve the behavioural and academic performance of the child.
Various researches have shown that behavioural interventions are effective. These include parent training, school interventions and social skills training. Parents should target and monitor some of the problematic behaviours in the child. They should reward prosocial behaviour by praising the child.
Providing positive attention and tangible rewards may be helpful to the child. They could also help to reduce some of the inappropriate behaviour through planned ignoring, issuing time outs and other forms of discipline that are not physical. Therefore, behavioural parent training is one of the most effective ways of treating attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (Chronis, Jones, & Raggi, 2006).
Teachers are also supposed to be trained on how to deal with the student’s situation and know how to use behavioural therapy to help improve the child’s behaviour. They could use various behavioural techniques. These include time outs, planned ignoring, praising the student and commanding the student effectively (Chronis, Jones, & Raggi, 2006).
Summary and conclusion
Toby has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, behaviour disorder and decoding issues. These issues are causing him to be disruptive in class and making him unable to learn and complete assignments in class. This is due to the fact that he is unable to concentrate on one activity because he is easily distracted.
He is also experiencing social problems due to the fact that he is hyperactive and his appearance amuses his classmates causing them to tease him. This is not healthy for Toby since it may affect his adulthood. Therefore, a plan of intervention is needed.
ADHD is a disorder that has been researched widely and several treatment interventions proposed. Such a student may be provided with medication. However, the most effective intervention is behavioural treatment. This could be administered by both the parents and the teacher.
This could be in the form of providing commands and forms of punishments in order to manage the behaviour of the child. Providing rewards and praising the child for particular tasks completed may also encourage the child to like the particular activity. Toby requires this behavioural intervention and this will be the responsibility of both the parents and teachers.
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry [AACAP]. (2007). Practice parameter for the assessment and treatment of children and adolescents with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. J. Am. Acad. Child Adolesc. Psychiatry, 46(7), 895-921.
Chronis, A., Jones, H., & Raggi, V. (2006). Evidence-based psychosocial treatments for children and adolescents with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Clinical Psychology, 26(1), 486-502.
Shanahan, M., Yerys, B., & Willcutt, E. (2006). Processing speed deficits in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and reading disability. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 34(1), 585-602.