Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder, or ADHD, has been a growing problem in the United States for decades. If your child is showing some of the common symptoms of this disorder, such as restlessness and an inability to concentrate in school, then you may think your first step should be obtaining a diagnosis from a mental health professional. However, there are many other health problems in children that can cause symptoms similar to ADHD, and you should have your pediatrician rule them out first. Here are two health problems that show similar symptoms to ADHD and their treatments.
1. Thyroid Problems
Children can experience hyperthyroidism or hypothyroidism, just as adults can. Hyperthyroidism is more likely to cause symptoms that mimic ADHD, as it can cause your child to feel restless and hyperactive. Hyperthyroidism in children is often the first sign of Grave's disease, although it can instead occur as a sole condition in children who have a strong family history of thyroid problems. Another symptom that can signal Grave's disease is any sudden vision problem that developed along with the other symptoms.
Simple blood tests can help your pediatrician determine if your child is producing too much thyroid hormone, and treatment varies depending on the severity of the condition. Options include iodine therapy, oral thyroid medications, or if your child's problem is severe, thyroid surgery may be required.
Another health problem that can cause symptoms that mimic ADHD is hypoglycemia. Many parents with children who have been diagnosed with ADHD report that their children's disorder becomes worse when their blood sugar is low, and many health experts think that this occurrence may be more than just a casual correlation and that the symptoms that mimic ADHD are caused solely by blood sugar fluctuations.
Hypoglycemia is another health problem that can be diagnosed relatively easily with blood sugar testing. If fasting blood sugar is very low, then that signals this problem that is usually very easily treatable by feeding your child a strategic diet plan. An eating plan to combat hypoglycemia typically consists of many small, well-balanced meals and snacks every several hours throughout the day instead of three large meals to keep blood sugar steady.
If your child is showing the symptoms of ADHD, then it is important to alert your pediatrician, so he or she can help you rule out any health problems that exhibit similar symptoms. These symptoms could be signals of a serious health problem, such as Grave's Disease or a less severe problem like hypoglycemia. Contact a professional such as Entira Family Clinics for more information.