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ADHD is a condition called Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.  It is when someone finds it difficult to concentrate, sit still or stop talking. It may also be called ADD.

What is it like for siblings who have a brother or sister with ADHD?

Siblings who have a brother or sister with ADHD often get on really well with them. However, siblings also say that things at home can be quite difficult as they never know what to expect. They say that their brothers and sisters need lots of extra attention from a parent, which makes them feel left out. Children with ADHD can sometimes be aggressive which makes siblings feel worried and afraid. They also say that their stuff can sometimes get damaged.

What causes ADHD?

Nobody is quite sure what causes ADHD, but it is to do with how the brain works. Everyone has special chemicals in their brain that help to control how they behave. Someone with ADHD may not have enough of some of these chemicals in their brain.

People who have ADHD are born with it, although they may not know about it until they are five or six or years old.  It is not their fault.

What does it mean?

People with ADHD are mainly affected in three ways.  They are restless, easily distracted and find it difficult to control themselves.

This may mean they are overactive, fidgety and noisy and may do things without thinking about them first. They may chatter all the time and often interrupt people and find it hard to take turns in play, conversations or stand in line. They can be clumsy and bump into things a lot, or drop things. They may also forget things and lose things, find it difficult to read and write and find it difficult to make friends.

Most people are like this some of the time, but someone with ADHD is like it a lot more, and cannot help it.

What treatment is there?

People with ADHD may be given medicine to help correct the balance of chemicals in their brains.  Other things which may help are:

  • Keeping to a good routine at home
  • Giving lots of praise when they behave well
  • Making instructions and rules very clear