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Saturday, September 17, 2011

Spotting Trouble On Your Kids - Part 2

Bipolar Disorder
The onset starts in the late teens or early adulthood but younger kids may be hit too.

What's Normal:
It's common for all kids to have mood swings or extreme silliness or sadness.

What's Not Normal:
Manic phase of a bipolar disorder can have symptoms of short temper, hyperkinetic speech, inability to focus and giddiness that doesn't go away. A depressive phase may have symptoms such as loss of energey, appetite and interest in things, and too little or too much sleep.

Talk therapy is ideal to help kids regulate their moods especially if family participates in the session. Drugs can also be administered but can have side effects.

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
ADHD usually hits from age 3-6 and can be later.

What's Normal:
Don't assume that every wild move is ADHD. It's hard to find a kid who is not hyperactive or short on attention, one of the reasons why ADHD is difficult to diagnose.

What's Not Normal:
Kids who are talkative have difficulty following directions, become bored easily, can't complete tasks or can't sit still even during meal maybe signs. Impulsivity is also an important sign, although this can be tricky one because most kids lack good impulse control. But the key would be severity.
Kids who always have trouble waiting their turn or seem incapable of letting an adult finish speaking without interrupting are likelier to have ADHD than kids who sometimes behave that way.

Behavioral therapy helps kids organize their thoughts, control their impulses and reward themselves for achieving their goals. Another common part of the therapy is giving stimulant medications that helps improve focus.

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