ADHD is a highly genetic, brain-based syndrome that has to do with the regulation of a particular set of brain functions and related behaviors.
These brain operations are collectively referred to as “executive functioning skills” and include important functions such as…
- motivation and effort
- learning from mistakes
- impulsivity, hyperactivity
- social skills.
There are various contributing factors that play a role in these challenges including chemical and structural differences in the brain as well as genetics.
It can lead to difficulties with…
Difficulty paying attention or focusing, such as when reading or listening to others.
“Zoning out” without realizing it, even in the middle of a conversation.
Struggling to complete tasks, even ones that seem simple. A tendency to overlook details, leading to errors or incomplete work.
Poor listening skills. Have a hard time remembering conversations and following directions.
Extreme distractibility OR hyperfocus. Wandering attention, or overfocusing; both can make it hard to stay on track.
ADD/ADHD and your neurotransmitters!
ADHD was the first disorder found to be the result of a deficiency of a specific neurotransmitter — in this case, norepinephrine — and the first disorder found to respond to medications to correct this underlying deficiency.
Like all neurotransmitters, norepinephrine is synthesized within the brain. The basic building block of each norepinephrine molecule is dopa; this tiny molecule is converted into dopamine, which, in turn, is converted into norepinephrine.