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Whether you are a caregiver or an educator for children and teens that may be experiencing symptoms of ADHD or that have already been diagnosed, you’ve come to the right place. Here, you’ll find the information and resources necessary to make a difference.

What ADHD Is

Attention-Deficit/
Hyperactivity
Disorder

ADHD is a neurobehavioral disorder characterized by a persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity/impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development. It is a medically recognized disorder, and the symptoms cause real challenges at home, at school and/or in social settings. ADHD and ADD (Attention-Deficit Disorder) describe the same condition.

What ADHD Is Not

ADHD is
not a myth

It is not about a lack of intelligence or motivation. It is not caused by bad parents or teachers. It is not classified as a learning disorder. It is not just an “excuse.”

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How ADHD Appears

What does ADHD look like?

Symptoms of ADHD in children may include often making careless mistakes in schoolwork, having difficulty paying attention in play activities, and leaving his or her seat in the classroom. ADHD starts in childhood but can continue into adolescence and adulthood.

What It’s Like to Be a Child With ADHD

What It’s Like to Be a Teen With ADHD

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Diagnosing ADHD

See an expert

Only a qualified healthcare professional can determine if a child has ADHD by taking several steps, including evaluating symptoms, frequency, and family history. There is no simple test for ADHD. However, there is a standardized way that ADHD is diagnosed. To be diagnosed with ADHD, a child must have at least six of the inattentive symptoms and/or six of the hyperactive/impulsive symptoms listed in this table. In addition, the child must:

  • Have symptoms for at least six months to a degree that is inconsistent with his or her developmental level and that negatively impacts him or her directly on social and academic/occupational activities
  • Have had several symptoms before age 12
  • Have several symptoms in at least two settings (such as home, school or work)
  • Have symptoms that clearly interfere with or reduce the quality of social, academic or occupational functioning
  • Have symptoms that cannot be better explained by another cause
Inattentive Symptoms*
Difficulty paying attention to details/makes careless mistakes
Difficulty sustaining attention
Unable to follow instructions and fails to finish tasks
Trouble with organization
Avoids tasks requiring sustained mental effort
Loses important things
Easily distracted
Forgetful in daily activities
HYPERACTIVE/IMPULSIVE SYMPTOMS*
Fidgets/squirms
Has trouble staying seated
Excessive running/climbing or restlessness
Trouble with quiet activities
Is "on the go" as if "driven by a motor"
Talks too much
Blurts out answers
Difficulty awaiting turn
Interrupts conversations or intrudes on others

*These symptoms must be present often and in 2 or more settings, such as at home, in school, and/or in social settings.

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ADHD Tools & Resources

Learn how to help manage ADHD throughout the education years and life stages. Download these guides for more information and tips.

Childhood ADHD tools & resources