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Attention Deficit Disorder

  • By: Ronda Lee Levine
  • In: Encyclopedia of Motherhood
  • Edited by: Andrea O'Reilly
  • Subject:Sociology of Gender, Parenting, Maternal Health

Attention deficit disorder (ADD) has become, in recent years, almost a childhood epidemic. Those diagnosed with the disorder exhibit difficulty paying attention, disorganization, impatience, forgetfulness, distractibility, fidgeting, excessive talking, and impulsiveness. Much controversy surrounds ADD—both in the diagnosis and in the treatment of the disorder. Treatment of ADD generally involves medication such as Ritalin® or Adderall®. Recent treatment options take a more holistic approach, focusing on dietary needs and restrictions rather than medications.

ADD first began to receive acknowledgment in 1980 by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Third Edition (DSM-III). This diagnosis focused on two types of ADD: ADD with hyperactivity and ADD without hyperactivity. By the time the DSM-IV came out, psychologists assigned many nuances to the disease. For the initial diagnosis, ...

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