Is ADHD a part of Autism?

photo young autistic boy playing with toys at home

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) are both neurodevelopmental disorders, but they are distinct diagnoses with different sets of symptoms.

ADHD is characterized by persistent patterns of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity that interfere with functioning or development. Symptoms may include difficulty staying focused and paying attention, difficulty controlling behavior, and hyperactivity (over-activity).

ASD, on the other hand, is a complex disorder characterized by difficulties in social interaction, verbal and nonverbal communication, and repetitive behaviors. People with ASD may also have unique strengths and differences in how they perceive the world.

Although they are separate conditions, there is a high degree of co-occurrence between ADHD and ASD. Many individuals diagnosed with ASD also exhibit symptoms of ADHD and vice versa. Some research suggests that up to half of those with ASD also show signs of ADHD. The reasons for this overlap are not fully understood but may involve shared genetic or environmental risk factors.

 

What are the signs of ADHD in kids’ behavior?

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most commonly diagnosed mental disorders in children. It can cause a range of behaviors, and these behaviors can vary among children. Here are some common signs and symptoms of ADHD in children:

  • Inattention: Children with ADHD may have a hard time focusing their attention, or they may make careless mistakes in schoolwork or other activities. They may seem to not listen when spoken to, have difficulty following through on instructions, and fail to finish schoolwork or chores. They may also be easily distracted or forgetful in daily activities.
  • Hyperactivity: Children with ADHD may seem to be in constant motion. They may run or climb excessively, have trouble playing quietly, or be constantly “on the go”. They may also talk excessively.
  • Impulsivity: Children with ADHD may act without thinking. They may be impatient, have difficulty waiting their turn, frequently interrupt others, or blurt out answers before questions have been completed.

It’s important to note that many children may exhibit these behaviors at times. However, in children with ADHD, these behaviors are more severe and occur more often. To be diagnosed with the disorder, a child must have symptoms for six or more months and to a degree that is greater than other children of the same age.

If you think your child might have ADHD, it’s important to talk to a healthcare provider at Achieve Therapy and Learning Services, Idaho Falls, ID. We can provide an evaluation and discuss possible treatment options. Treatments can include behavioral intervention strategies, medication, and school accommodations.

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