For her whole life, Emma Mahony has shamed and blamed herself for not being like ‘neurotypical’ women. It wasn’t until her son was diagnosed with ADHD that her journey of self-discovery began, leading to her own diagnosis at 52
Because of the way my brain is wired, I can’t help but get things wrong. Even at the age of one, when I learnt to speak, I would say everything backwards. Butter was ‘tubba’, birds were ‘dubbies’ and it took a while for my parents to transpose the letters and see that I was making sense.
The merest trifles that most people do naturally – arriving at places on time, remembering their wallet, not losing things constantly, such as keys, mobile phones, and credit cards, paying fines, avoiding speeding tickets – are rather boring things at which to excel in my world. I’ve made them that way so as not to beat myself up when I fail at them regularly.
However, the older I get, the more I realise that these boring things are actually important, and how exasperating it is for people when they think that I do them ‘on purpose’ or, more recently since my diagnosis, that I ‘use ADHD as an excuse’.
ADHD is not a moral failing; it is a neurological one. It is not ‘all in your head’, and there’s no ‘subconscious intention to forget something’, as one professional continually suggested before diagnosis. It is just that I am neuroatypical. Click here to read the rest of the story.
Published by: Health Central
Written by: Holly Pevzner
What Is ADHD, Again?
Simply put, ADHD, or attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, is one of the most prevalent childhood conditions that can continue through adolescence and into adulthood.
According to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 6.1 million children have been diagnosed with ADHD. Boys are more likely to be diagnosed (12.9%) than girls (5.6%). And it’s incredibly common among adults: Roughly 11 million have ADHD, or 5% of the adult population.
There are three main behaviors associated with ADHD, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH):
Of course, every kid (and adult) is inattentive or impulsive at times. Who among us hasn’t felt like jumping out of their skin while having to stay in place during, say, a pandemic? But ADHD is different: It’s not being inattentive sometimes, or hyperactive now and then. In children with ADHD, these behaviors:
are more severe
happen more often
interfere with quality of life
What Causes ADHD in Children?
ADHD is a chronic neurobiological condition and its cause is not entirely known. Right now, there’s zero evidence to show that allergies, immunizations, parenting styles, or too much sugar or food additives have anything to do with your child’s diagnosis.
And even though 58% of Americans surveyed believe an uptick in technology and video game play has led to a greater occurrence of ADHD in children, there’s no clear evidence that this is accurate either.
Instead, kids between 8 and 10 who already have multiple ADHD symptoms do seem to game more than others, notes a 2020 report in the journal European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry. The probable reason? Fast-moving video games are pretty effective at holding the attention of kids who find concentrating challenging. Click here to read the rest of the story
Angelman syndrome is a genetic disorder that affects the nervous system. Characteristics include developmental delays, intellectual disabilities, epilepsy, short attention span, hyperactivity, hand flapping and speech impairments. It is a rare disorder that affects 1 in 12,000 to 20,000 a year. there are less than 200,000 cases a year and affects all ethnicities and sexes equally.
Typically, there is a severe developmental delay and learning disability as well as near absence of speech and ataxia including ataxia including jerky movements of the arms and legs. People with Angelman syndrome generally have a happy demeanor and an inappropriate laughter.
Life expectancy appears to be normal. As people with Angelman syndrome age, scoliosis tends to worsen and for many people born with epilepsy, there are cases where seizures stop, however, they tend to return as the person gets older.
Due to cognitive and medical needs, a person with Angelman syndrome will always require support. Most people with Angelman syndrome attend a day habilitation setting. Support should include
staff trained on identifying seizures and providing assistance
programs that support the person’s short attention span
evaluation for a communication device or a means to communicate
support for self-injurious behavior
The following are resources and articles on Angelman syndrome and adulthood
If you work in a special education class or a day habilitation setting, more than likely you are teaching a student or an individual with complex needs including the use of a feeding tube.
February 8-12 is recognized as Feeding Tube Awareness Month which is a great opportunity to provide information on tube feeding in an educational setting. According to the Tube Feeding Awareness Foundation, there are over 300 conditions that require students and individuals to receive nutritional support through tube feeding.
What is a feeding tube?
A feeding tube is a device that is inserted in the stomach wall and goes directly into the stomach. It bypasses chewing and swallowing in a student or individual who no longer has the ability to safely eat or drink. This allows for students and individuals to receive adequate nutritional support.
A feeding tube is also used for students and adults who cannot take in enough food by mouth. Feeding tubes can be temporary or permanent .
Reasons to use a feeding tube
The student or individual may have a swallowing disorder or dysphasia. This means there is an increase risk for the student or individual to aspirate their foods or liquids into their lungs. Causes of swallowing problems include low-muscle tone, brain injury, genetic conditions, sensory issues, neurological conditions, cleft lip/palate and birth defects of the esophagus or stomach.
Types of Feeding Tubes
Gatro Feeding Tube
The gastrostomy tube (G tube) is placed through the skin into the stomach. The stomach and the skin usually heal in 5-7 days. This type of tube is generally used in people with developmental disabilities for long term feeding.
Nasogastric Feeding Tube
The nasogastric (NG tube) is inserted through the nose, into the swallowing tube and into the stomach. The NG tube is typically used in the hospital to drain fluid from the stomach for short term tube feeding.
Neurological and Genetic Conditions Requiring Tube Feeding
Some students and individuals with neurological and genetic conditions often require tube feeding due to gastrointestinal issues including constipation, reflux, and abnormal food-related behaviors. It For example, it is estimate that 11% of children with cerebral palsy use a feeding tube due to difficulty with eating, swallowing, and drinking.
The following are different types of neurological or genetic conditions that may require the use of a feeding tube.