A nurse's introduction to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

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Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is currently one of the most prevalent neurodevelopmental psychiatric diagnoses for children and young people in the UK. An NHS series of surveys completed by Forbes et al (2018) found a ‘hyperactivity disorder’ diagnosis rate of 1.6% for children aged between 5 and 19 years. This is much lower than the estimated worldwide diagnostic rate of 5–7% in children and adolescents and did not capture the 47.4% persistence rate into adulthood, or the 2.8% adult diagnostic rate (Polanczyk et al, 2014).

With such a relatively common disorder, it is likely that all nurses will at some point in their careers care for a patient with a diagnosis of ADHD, regardless of clinical environment. Furthermore, individuals with ADHD are more likely to be overweight and have less healthy diets than other adults, leading to increased contact with health services because they are likely to need care for other conditions (Barkley, 2010).
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)678-680
JournalBritish Journal of Nursing
Issue number11
Early online date12 Jun 2019
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jun 2019


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