Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a “disruptive behavior disorder” characterized by inattention, hyperactivity or their combination. In those with ADD, the frontal cortex (the surface) of the brain has more difficulty using glucose and less blood flow than in people without ADD. The frontal cortex inhibits impulses, initiates behavior and controls working memory. In people with ADD/ADHD, the weakest cognitive skill is attention (divided, sustained and/or selective), although other areas may suffer as well.
Symptoms & Characteristics
Hyperactivity includes: Overactivity – Fidgeting most of the time – Squirming in their seat – Purposeless or non-goal directed activity – Goes from one activity to another without completing any.
Distractibility includes: Very distractible – Does not complete tasks – Lacks selective attention – Unable to concentrate (unless fascinated by a subject) – Tendency to daydream.
Impulsivity includes: Demands must be met immediately – Needs immediate reward for achievement – Poor planning – Lack of organizational skills – Lack of self-control – Doing things without thinking of consequences.
How We Can Help
Cognitive skills training attacks the root causes of ADD/ADHD by strengthening weak cognitive skills, executive functioning and attention. (In the case of ADD/ADHD, selective, divided and sustained attention.)