Thursday, June 25, 2009

"11 Behavioral Similarities Between ADHD and Auditory Processing Disorder" by Colleen Bain

ADHD is so readily diagnosed in many children today. However, clinicians are in a continual debate about the overlapping symptoms of ADHD and Auditory Processing Disorder. There is growing concern that some children are being treated with stimulants when what they really need is auditory skill strengthening.

According to Dr. David D. Nowell, Ph.D: Clinical neuropsychologist, there are certain similarities and differences between Auditory Processing and ADHD. I wanted to write about this because a lot of parents feel challenged with their ADHD child. Perhaps, after reading this article, you may discover your child may have been mis-diagnosed. On the other hand, you may recognize your child has both ADHD and APD.

The following list shows the similarities between the two disorders according to neuropsychologists that Dr. Nowell interviewed.

  1. Decreased auditory attention
  2. Decreased frustration tolerance
  3. Difficulty following directions
  4. Diminished motivation
  5. Diminished memory
  6. Diminished self-awareness
  7. Diminished social skills
  8. Distractibility
  9. Sensitivity to overstimulation
  10. Task avoidance
  11. Withdrawn/sullen
Do any of the 11 behaviors describe your child? This is the challenge that clinicians as well as teachers are facing today. Its really hard to determine if the child's behavior is ADHD or APD.

The next list shows us the symptoms unique to ADHD.

  1. Aggressive behavior
  2. Decreased visual attention
  3. Difficulty with transitions
  4. Diminished mental flexibility
  5. Diminished motor coordination
  6. Excessive motor activity
  7. Impulsivity
  8. Impaired peer relationship

Do you see your child's behavior listed above? If yes, your child may fall more towards ADHD according to Dr. Nowell.

This last list depicts the symptoms specific to APD. The symptoms listed deal with language and the ability to process words/language from the brain and verbalize meaning or write meaning on paper.

  1. Diminished verbal abstraction
  2. Diminished Verbal IQ

Of course, no child will fit into these lists nice and neatly. Doctors use this list as a guide to better understand the child being examined.

My personal issue with the above lists is that they point out behavioral concerns that all result or could result from brain based cognitive weaknesses. By having a child take my online cognitive assessment, I can determine which skills are weak and target to strengthen them. The result would be lessened if not removal of many to all of the behavioral concerns stemming from underlying cognitive weaknesses. If a child still showed residual symptoms from the list above after brain training then more extensive intervention is required. The good news is that even if the child needs to be handed off for remediation or additional intervention, their brain has new neuropathways and their cognitive skills have been strengthened. Further intervention and remediation will have a start and end date. The child will be much more successful than if no brain training had occurred.

If you want more information on how ELSKs Student Transformation System will help your child learn easily and efficiently read more on my website now.

Blessings and Brain Power,


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