Is My Daughter Adhd?

Updated on August 30, 2008
R.M. asks from Oswego, IL
3 answers

Ok i need help. My daughter is 3, and i am having the most difficult time with her. She is so smart, but i cant get her to focus on anything. I have been trying to prepare her for preschool and kindergarten by teaching her simple things at home. She knows her colors, she can count to 13 verbally, she can say her abc's, but she is having trouble with pointing to something and counting, and can not recognize any letter of the alphabet (except the letter A, because her name starts with A). She is always bouncing off the walls, she never holds still long enough to do anything except watch a cartoon once and a while. I have always read books to her since she was a baby and she used to sit through 10 books, but now i am lucky to finish 1. I try to do art projects at home with her a couple times a week and even that is becoming more difficult because she wont sit at the table long enough to finish the project. She looks forward to doing these things and asks me everyday if we can do art, or puzzles or read, school work etc... But i am losing patience some days because its like she is not even trying to pay attention. She spaces off in her own world all the time. I know part of it is her age, but i am a little concerned that it could be a bigger problem. Adhd runs in her bio fathers side of the family. Her bio dad has two other children that are out of control and have been diagnosed already. Should i have her evaluated by a doctor? At what age? Any advice or ideas you moms have would be great. Thanks in advance.

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answers from Rockford on

Definately speak to your doctor. It's quite possible that nothing is wrong, that this is typical behavior for a toddler, but if you feel in your gut that there is something wrong here, trust your instincts and get a doctor to evaluate. If your doctor blows off your concerns, doesn't seem to listen or dismisses you without evaluating her, get a second opinion. Don't dismiss your gut feeling. Show your doctor the letter you wrote to us. (I would be more concerned about the focus, or lack thereof, than about the hyperactivity.)

She sounds like a bright, happy and spirited little girl. It's possible that it could just be her nature. Or maybe there is something else at play here. But a doctor can make that call.

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answers from Rockford on

I have been a teacher for 8 years and I have a lot of experience with ADHD. It is genetic so if there is a family history it could be a good possiblility. My friend has a 5 yr old that has been on medication for 2 years so a child as young as 3 can be treated with medication. There is a very simple way to know whether she is truly ADHD and that is to put her on medication. ADHD medication works right away so if she does indeed have it you should notice a big difference in her after she takes the meds. If you give her the meds and there is no difference then it is no ADHD. There is a lot of controversy on meds but from a teacher's point of view it makes a world of difference. Think of it this way if your child was a diabetic would you give her insulin? Of course you would ADHD is a brain disorder and should be treated with meds at a young age. Now I do work with older children and as some get older they really do start to develop better coping skills that allows them to get off the meds. Hope this helps but you should get her to the doc the sooner the better.

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answers from Rockford on

It sounds to me like a busy 3 year old who is just figuring out how many wonderful things there are to do. Very few docs are willing to give an ad(h)d diagnosis to a child so young. Is she going through a sleep transition period at all - like giving up a nap or adjusting night time sleep time? My son displays very wild adhd type behavior when he is over-tired. Also he has difficulty focusing if in need of sleep. If she can recognize the first letter of her name at age 3 that is perfectly on target. Recongnizing one's name is a goal for the first year of pre-school (age 3-4) and knowing the first letter is the first step in that. And 1:1 correspondence with counting often doesn't come until closer to age 5 even. It is easier for kids to count out objects that they can manipulate (ie pieces of cereal or m&ms) than to count say 4 bears in a picture. I remember my son's pk teacher saying that she always uses m&ms when testing that skill with kids as they are more likely to get it right. I don't have a lot of advice for you except to try to keep her to a somewhat structured routine. If she know that from x time to x time we read books and from x time to x time we play _________ ,etc. etc. - she may learn to anticipate those items and then realize that if she doesn't participate at that time that she misses out until the next time. It sounds like you are really trying to do good by her. Good for you.

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