Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or commonly abbreviated as ADHD is one of the common behavioral disorders in children. About 10% of school-aged children experience ADHD. However, this disorder seems difficult to understand. Not infrequently, people consider ADHD the same as autism. In fact, both are different things.
Then, what exactly is ADHD? What is the difference between ADHD and autism?
What is ADHD?
ADHD is a behavioral disorder that starts in childhood, and can affect adolescents and adults. Reporting from the National Institute of Mental Health, ADHD is a disorder that occurs in the brain, this is characterized by inattention and /or hyperactivity and impulsivity that interfere with the functioning and development of the child's brain.
Children with ADHD have difficulty staying focused. He usually does not feel at home if he has to sit and study for a long time. However, this is not because they do not understand what they are learning.
ADHD children are hyperactive children. They like to keep moving, maybe even to disturb friends who are nearby. They also like to act impulsively. That is, they like to take sudden action without thinking about it first, they do not like to delay desire or satisfaction.
What is the difference between ADHD and autism?
Children with ADHD and autism both have problems with attention. Their behavior likes to change suddenly (impulsively) and also difficult to communicate. They have problems in dealing with other people.
Because it looks similar, sometimes people equate ADHD with autism. But, actually both are two different things. Then, what's the difference?
If you pay close attention, children with ADHD will be different from children with autism. ADHD affects how the brain grows and develops. Whereas, autism is a series of developmental disorders that affect language ability, behavior, social interaction, and learning ability.
In terms of attention ...
ADHD children tend to avoid things that need high focus, such as reading a book. They even from the beginning have seen no interest in these matters. Meanwhile, children with autism tend to want to try to focus on the things they like. They can learn the things they like well, like playing with certain toys.
In terms of interaction and communication with other people
Children with ADHD tend to talk endlessly. They can interfere when people talk and like if they become dominant during discussion. Meanwhile, children with autism often have difficulty entering words into thoughts and feelings. So, they may be more difficult in expressing their opinions. They are also difficult to make eye contact.
In terms of routines
Children with ADHD tend to dislike doing the same routine every day or for a long time. While children with autism tend to like things that have been arranged, they like order, and do not like it if their routine suddenly changes.
What should be considered when treating a child with ADHD or autism?
It's difficult for you as a parent, even for doctors to distinguish between ADHD and autism. Sometimes, some children with autism also have ADHD. However, the diagnosis of ADHD or autism must be enforced so that the child gets proper care.
The right treatment aims to make ADHD and autism symptoms manageable, not to cure. The combination of drug therapy and behavior is the best way to treat children with ADHD or autism. Behavioral therapy aims to help children change their behavior.
Children with autism may have to receive various types of therapy, related to behavior, speech, sensory integration, and learning, to help them communicate and connect with others.
Treatment for ADHD can reduce hyperactivity and impulsivity, and can improve concentration, work, understanding, and physical coordination. Sometimes several drugs with different types and doses should be tried before finding the right one for the child.
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