Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is the most commonly diagnosed mental disorder among children in the United States, affecting around six million children as of 2019. Children with ADHD often have difficulty paying attention, trouble controlling their behavior, and excessive activity, which can impact their experience at school and their home life. Early symptoms of ADHD include the child being easily distracted, forgetting daily activities, not paying attention, having trouble being quiet or sitting still, or problems waiting for their turn. Despite some misconceptions, ADHD does not disappear with adulthood. Although overall hyperactivity may decrease with age, symptoms manifest themselves in other ways among adults, such as through impulsiveness, mood swings, anxiety, chronic lateness, anger issues, and disorganization and procrastination. As of the fall of 2022, it was estimated that around 15 percent of college students suffered from ADHD.
ADHD is most commonly treated with medication, therapy, or a combination of both. A couple of the most well-known medications to treat ADHD include Ritalin and Adderall. Both drugs are known for their potential for abuse among those not suffering from ADHD, yet the overall use of both Ritalin and Adderall among high school students has declined in recent years. Therapy can be effective in treating and coping with ADHD, especially considering that many of those who suffer from the disorder also suffer from another disorder, such as anxiety or depression. Treatment utilization can vary greatly by state, with almost 92 percent of children and adolescents with ADHD in Nebraska receiving some form of treatment for the disorder from 2016 to 2019, while less than 60 percent in New Jersey received treatment during that time.
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