ADHD: Symptoms and Diagnosis

ADHD symbol design isolated on white backgroundAttention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is a behavioral disorder typically diagnosed among children. However, adults may also be diagnosed with the condition given they can meet certain criteria. Adult ADHD is a separate branch of ADHD. For children to be diagnosed with ADHD they need to have demonstrated enough symptoms to establish them as being out of their peer specific range of behaviours.

Basically, what that means is that individuals who are identified as suffering from ADHD will have shown significant discrepancies in behaviour when compared to their peers. Sometimes, the condition be traced to hereditary factors while in other cases, the reason may remain unknown. It has been observed that ADHD is more common in boys than in their female counterparts. If there is the slightest suspicion that the child may be exhibiting symptoms of ADHD, a fast referral with a medical professional should be sought.

Symptoms:

Broadly speaking there are three areas of behaviour where symptoms of ADHD are most notable:

Inattention: Young individuals who find it challenging to stay focused on task and exhibit fleeting attention may be suffering from the more obvious symptoms of ADHD. These children will typically make careless mistakes, be unable to pay attention to detail and will likely find it very hard to follow through with instructions.

At the same time, their organizational skills are not their strongest skill and they will appear distracted easily. Inattentiveness among children with ADHD symptoms may also include issues like forgetfulness and not seeming to listen when addressed directly.

Hyperactivity: Another common red flag, children will appear extremely restless, will fidget a lot and find it very hard to sit still for prolonged periods of time. Remaining quiet during playtime is difficult for these children and they are inclined to running and climbing excessively. Ranting out of habit is also observed as a common symptom among these children.

Impulsive behavior: Exhibiting impulsive behaviour is very common among children with ADHD. Unable to restrain themselves, such individuals will blurt out answers, do not favor turn taking, and will likely interrupt others when speaking.

Diagnosis:

There is a specific criteria that needs to be met before a diagnosis for ADHD can be given. Since many of the symptoms appear generic enough, children need to exhibit certain behaviours in different settings consistently before they can be diagnosed.

Depending on the child’s age the criteria also varies. For instance, children younger than the age of seven need to show a minimum of 6 inattention symptoms or 6 of the hyperactivity/ impulsivity symptoms to be diagnosed.

These symptoms need to be apparent consistently for a minimum period of six months, be noted in two or more settings, independent of any other concerns. Locations where these symptoms can be noted and raise concerns include home, schools, day cares and other social locations.

Prior to handing out a confirmed diagnosis, parents, teachers and care givers will be consulted by professionals. Any concerns regarding physical, developmental and psychological issues will be evaluated.

 

 

 

This entry was posted on January 30, 2015 at 1:07 pm.

Depression and Bulemia

depression1Some people replace love with food. They eat when they’re depressed or disappointed. With every morsel, there problems seem to fade just a little. So they eat a lot just to silence their problems or until they feel relieved from whatever is bothering them.People suffering from Bulimia engage in this behaviour of binge eating but then immediately tries to get rid of it for fear of gaining weight of becoming fat.

Bulimia Nervosa is serious eating disorder and a mental illness. A person with Bulimia has cycles of bingeing and purging whatever they’ve eaten either by inducing vomiting, taking stimulants, laxatives, enemas exercising or others. The aim is to avoid getting fat or gaining weight. These counter-measures taken after binge eating are not necessarily voluntary. Once a person with Bulimia has consumed 4000 calories, panic sets in and it grows increasingly until the person feels compelled to purge their system off the kilo-calories.

Certain factors might put a person at risk of becoming a Bulimic. For example, a close relative: mother, sister etc. who suffers from an eating disorder or is morbidly obese could scare them enough to make them fixate on not wanting to gain an inch wider to avoid ending up like them. They could be pressured by social standards to get a slimmer look or struggling with a little bit of overweight. Such people go on restrictive diets and then when an emotional meltdown sets in – bingeing and purging become the fix.

People suffering from Bulimia Nervosa are excessively concerned with their body image. In fact, they draw their self-esteem from the size of their body. They have these compulsive episodes of eating large amounts of food which is instantly followed by self-induced vomiting. Their knuckles are often scarred from forcing fingers down the throat to induce vomiting, discoloured teeth due to recurrent exposure to gastric juices when throwing up and puff cheeks are a result of repeated vomiting.

This condition is more common in women than in men. However, recent studies show that out 1.6 million Britons suffering from eating disorders, men make up 25%. Children are rarely affected.

The most danger outcome of Bulimia is dehydration. When they starve their bodies of fluids and cause an electrolyte imbalance, things can get very bad, quickly. Certain electrolytes such potassium when lost can cause mild symptoms like fatigue, muscle pain, irregular heartbeat, to serious conditions kidney failure and even premature death. Others include mouth sores, acid reflux, gastric ulcers, broken blood vessel in the eye etc.

The first and most important step is to accept they have a problem. Ask for help, they can talk to someone they trust who can help them get better. Get professional assistance to help them learn how to eat normally again and develop a healthier perspective on food and on redefining their body image realistically. A support system around them is very important and helpful.

Psychotherapy can be extremely beneficial. Since self-esteem lies at the centre of Bulimia, regaining their self-worthiness is a major part of recovery. Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is recommended to curb the compulsive binge-purge cycle, restructure their thought patterns and targets to resolves the underlying emotional issues. When psychological aid is insufficient to cure emotional eating, We have to consider the 5 brain chemicals which regulates our appetites and emotions. The main neurotransmitters are made-up of amino acids.

This entry was posted on November 5, 2014 at 1:08 pm.

HOW TO GET RID OF ATHLETE’S FOOT (TINEA PEDIS)

athletes-foot-pictureWhile the name of this disease may associate on the athletes, the fact is that you do not have to be a sport-type to have an athlete’s foot. It is actually a change on the skin of the feet, caused by fungus from the group of dermatophytes. For the development of the fungus, foot and part between the toes are the perfect place – dark, warm and damp. The fungus normally lives on our skin, but when they have ideal conditions, they can develop too much. Then fungus infects the skin, causing changes such as the athlete’s foot. On the infected foot occurs a rash, dry skin, itching and burning. The feet that are not healed can be real transmitters of this disease among the people. The fungus can be easily transferred using a common towel or shared bathrooms where we walk barefoot. One more reason why you should get rid of athlete’s foot. In this healing process can help medicines applied to a diseased area which can be purchased at the pharmacy, but also some home remedies. 1

Remedies for athlete’s foot

Given that for athlete’s foot are responsible fungus, to resolve this unpleasant condition look for some antifungal drugs in the form of creams that can be applied on foot or between the toes. It is desirable to look for those that contain ingredients like: sulconazole, terbinafine clotrimazole, econazole, ketoconazole miconazole.3

Hydrocortisone therapy may be beneficial when the infected areas are swollen and inflamed. Hydrocortisone can reduce inflammation, but should not be used longer than 7 days. When inflammation is reduced, this is not the end of therapy. Then you have to continue treatment without hydrocortisone.2

To some therapy is effective, it is best to apply it a few inches around the infected places. The fact that the infection is not yet visible to the naked eye, does not mean that the place is not infected by fungi.

Home remedies for athlete’s foot

In addition to those antifungal drugs that we can get over the counter in the pharmacy, there are those remedies that are part of every household, and which are always close at hand. Try the following:

Garlic is known for its antibacterial and antifungal properties. Especially is, in this case, effective its organic trisulphur- ajoene. There are creams with ajoene,but you can also apply the garlic directly. Mash it ,chop it and apply to the affected areas. If your skin is dry, add a little olive oil and make a lining that you will keep for 20 minutes every day.5

Vinegar can be used as a healing bath for your feet. Soak them in a single dose of vinegar and two doses of water for 20 minutes a day.

Salt is another ingredient that may be found in any kitchen, which may help in killing the fungus. 2 teaspoons of salt dissolve in one pint of warm water and soak your feet for 15-20 minutes.8

Of course, it is very important to dry your feet well before you put on your socks.

Prevention is next to godliness

We all know that prevention is halfway to health. And these three steps can bring you there.

  1. To prevent athlete’s foot, it is necessary to prevent the conditions for fungus emergence, and it is primarily a moisture.
  • Keep your feet clean and dry. To be sure, you have picked up excess moisture, use a medicated powder or baking soda and sprinkle them in your shoes.
  • Wear socks and shoes made of natural materials in which the feet sweat less.
  1. Prevent the spread of the fungus.
  • Do not share your shoes and socks with infected people.
  • Wash your socks at 60 degrees to kill fungal spores and prevent their expansion.6
  • Do not walk barefoot in public bathrooms, dressing rooms, showers and pools and do not share your towels with others.
  1. Change your eating habits. Drink yogurt with acidophilus culture or take acidophilus supplement. In addition to being a successful fight against fungi, they strengthen your immune system. The stronger organism will be easier to deal with the infection of any kind. For this purpose also enter sufficient amounts of vitamin C through diet with fresh fruits and vegetables. Avoid sugars because they can create a fertile environment for bacterial growth. 7

If symptoms do not disappear after a few weeks of treatment, seek advice from your doctor. Be persistent and regularly treat your feet. Athlete’s foot is not a disease that occurred overnight, and it will not disappear that way. That does not mean that it is incurable. A little discipline and persistence and your feet will be healthy again.

1.) Mayo Clinic -> Athletes Foot

2.) NHS UK -> Athletes Foot Treatment

3.) Harvard Health EDU ->Athletes Foot Treatment, Prevention and Cure

4.) Home Remedies -> Athletes Foot

5.) PubMed ->Efficacy of ajoene, an organosulphur derived from garlic, in the short-term therapy of tinea pedis.

6.) PubMed ->The effect of domestic laundry processes on fungal contamination of socks.

7.) Home Remedies For You -> Athletes Foot

8.) Health 911 -> Athletes Foot

This entry was posted on May 14, 2014 at 1:08 pm.

The Effects of Anxiety

anxietySometimes, the ones who experience symptoms of anxiety step into a journey characterized by a snowball effect of more and more anxiety, without even being able to realize what is actually happening.

What is it?

Medically speaking, the diagnosis of generalized anxiety is established upon occurrence of several anxiety manifestations for a continuous period of at least six months. These anxiety expressions consist of a combination of symptoms that may include some of the following:

  • Fatigue, extreme tiredness.
  • Tremors, muscle tension and restlessness, bruxism.
  • Autonomous hyperactivity, which can be reflected in: dry mouth, tachycardia, chills, palpitations, breathlessness, more frequent urination episodes.
  • Exaggerated response towards normal occurrences.
  • Irritability, difficulty to relax and focus, memory problems, easily startled.
  • Physical manifestations such as stomachache, headache and dizziness, myalgia, arthralgia, clammy hands, nausea, diarrhea, increased blood pressure (Brawman-Mintzeret al 1994, Steffens and McQuoid 2005).

What triggers the anxiety?

Quite often, there is no apparent reason for the onset of a generalized anxiety history. However, subjection to stressful environments, such as an extremely demanding and stressful job, may actually induce anxiety disorders.Also, there is a small degree of genetic susceptibility to suffer anxiety, and the use and/or withdrawal of certain substances (e.g. alcohol, drugs of abuse, medicines) may trigger its onset (Scherreret al 2000).

What are the complications of anxiety?

The symptoms typically associated with anxiety disorders usually increase, slowly and gradually, in magnitude and number. The anxiety level will reach, eventually, a level that starts promoting a decrease in the quality of life and compromising social interactions. Dealing with family, friends, colleagues and bosses may become more and more challenging and troublesome, jeopardizing friendships and jobs positions.Ultimately, a person suffering of generalized anxiety or sporadic anxiety episodes may undergo panic attacks. The latter consist of a mixture of several strong symptoms, which include severe breathlessness, palpitations and feeling of danger. People who have experienced panic attacks describe them as an extremely distressing feeling accompanied by the sensation of imminent death.Generalized anxiety is often associated with other co-morbidities such as major depressive disorder, social phobia or agoraphobia (Steffens and McQuoid 2005).

How can it be treated?

As untreated anxiety can increase gradually and create an anti-social barrier, it is recommended to treat individuals who manifest anxiety symptoms for more than six months. A proper evaluation should be performed by a medical doctor to get appropriate diagnostic and treatment plan. There are no exams or tests that can be performed to confirm generalized anxiety; the diagnosis is based in answers to questions about the symptoms and eventual physical tests to exclude other conditions.

Usually, generalized anxiety appears frequently associated to depression. The treatment plan may include the use of antidepressants to treat an underlying depression, benzodiazepines to treat anxiety and eventually beta-blockers to decrease the excessive autonomous hyperactivity. Please bear in mind than if you experience symptoms as those described herein, you should not start the mentioned medications by your own initiative. Have a talkto your medical doctorabout the situation (Combs and Markman 2014, Mohattet al 2014).

Bibliography

Combs H, Markman J. Anxiety disorders in primary care. Med Clin North Am. 2014 Sep;98(5):1007-23.

Mohatt J, Bennett SM, Walkup JT. Treatment of separation, generalized, and social anxiety disorders in youths. Am J Psychiatry. 2014 Jul;171(7):741-8.

Scherrer JF, True WR, Xian H, Lyons MJ, Eisen SA, Goldberg J, Lin N, Tsuang MT. Evidence for genetic influences common and specific to symptoms of generalized anxiety and panic. J Affect Disord. 2000 Jan-Mar;57(1-3):25-35.

Steffens DC, McQuoid DR. Impact of symptoms of generalized anxiety disorder on the course of late-life depression. Am J Geriatr Psychiatry. 2005 Jan;13(1):40-7.

Brawman-Mintzer O, Lydiard RB, Crawford MM, Emmanuel N, Payeur R, Johnson M, Knapp RG, Ballenger JC. Somatic symptoms in generalized anxiety disorder with and without comorbid psychiatric disorders. Am J Psychiatry. 1994 Jun;151(6):930-2.

This entry was posted on February 1, 2014 at 2:07 am.