The neurotransmitter associated with the disorder appears to be dopamine. Variants of the dopamine receptor have been found in ADHD patients (NIMH, 2002). Higher concentrationsof dopamine transporters have been noted in the striatum of ADHD subjects (Dresel, Kung, Plossl, Meegalla, & Kung, 1998).
Since the 1970’s ADHD and its treatments have been shrouded withcontroversy. Opponents of the disorder typically disagree with stimulant treatments and question the existence of the disorder. Others believe the disorder has a genetic basis. Health professionals todaygenerally accept the disorder, but have disagreements regarding the diagnosis method and appropriate treatment.
The DSM-IV is viewed as the definitive handbook for diagnosing disorders of this type.According to this reference individuals must have either 6 symptoms of inattention or 6 symptoms of hyperactivity/impulsivity present for a minimum of 6 months (Greenhill, Posner, Vaughan, & Kratochvil,2008). Inattention is documented by such behaviors as making careless mistakes on schoolwork, not appearing to listen when spoken to, not following instructions, difficulty organizing, not wishing toengage in activities requiring sustained mental effort, frequently losing items, easily distracted, and forgetful. Hyperactivity is documented by the present of behaviors such as feeling restless,having difficulty remaining seated, and talking excessively. Impulsiveness is demonstrated by blurting out answers, having difficulty waiting one’s turn, and interrupting others. According to the DSM-IVsome of the symptoms must have been present before the age of 7 years (Greenhill, Posner, Vaughan, & Kratochvil, 2008) . Evidence of significant impairment in social, school, or work must be present.The condition must negatively impact a minimum of 2 areas within the child’s life (Greenhill, Posner, Vaughan, & Kratochvil, 2008). These areas include classroom, playground, home, community or social...
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