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Avatar universal

Does my daughter have ADD?

My 10 yr. old daughter is highly forgetful! It isn't just at home, it's at school also. At home she can't seem to remember to do anything asked of. I can ask her to do something but she seems to deviate from the task within seconds. At school sch can complete school work but either fails to turn in the assignment that I signed, or simply never gets around to completing it. When asked why she never completes the assignment or didn't turn in the homework her answer is: I forgot it, I couldn't find where I put it, or I tried to remember about it-I promise I did but I just couldn't remember it. At home I get so frustrated with her because I will have just asked her to do something and only moments later she is in lala-land completely oblivious to the task asked of her. When I remind her of it, if I can refrain from my own anger she tries to redirect herself but if I get angry of course she does as well. Help?!?! Does she have ADD/ADHD? Is there some other tyoe of issue? I know that others in her father's family have ADD but I didn't think it was inherited. Should I have her evaluated?
13 Responses
535822 tn?1443976780
I doubt it but you can always have her evaluated to set your mind at rest, I think children tune out mine did ,and I did especially at school my teacher used to throw chalk at me because I was day dreaming or half asleep .Its a common issue,my kids were all forgetful about everything that too is very common . Jus be patient I am sure as she gets older it will get better..good luck
973741 tn?1342342773
Well, it is hard to say for certain.  She completes her work which is a good sign.  Does her teacher have concerns?  With add, it is much harder to immediately tell.  Worth looking into though as some classroom modifications can really help.  Even an organizer with a check list routine might help her.  As in, she does her homework, she takes it to school and must check mark her binder that she turned it in.  She can't forget because she has to check it off the list.  These are the kinds of coping skills that you can work on with her.

A child psychiatrist diagnoses this if you do feel she should be evaluated.  You can go the school route--------  they must evaluate her if you request it.  But I know in my district, they don't act on it in terms of an IEP unless there is an academic issue that warrents it.  (as in her grades are below where they should be).

Let us know what you find out.  good luck
189897 tn?1441126518
COMMUNITY LEADER
     In "The ADD/ ADHD Answer book," by Susan Ashley, (p13), she says, Overall, there is strong evidence that AD/HD may be inherited."
     As Margypops correctly points out - kids will tune out.  What does bother me a bit is that at age 10 the peer pressure is typically still pretty strong to do homework, make the teacher happy, etc.  If she actually is getting the work done at home and not turning it in - that is problematic.
    And specialmom has a very good point about finding ways to help her organize.  That will help her in either situation.  
    Outside of the book I mentioned above - its hard to find good sites with info on ADD.  This is probably one of the best I have found -  http://helpguide.org/mental/adhd_add_signs_symptoms.htm
   You might want to check it out.  If you have any any questions - I do monitor the ADHD site found here: http://www.medhelp.org/forums/ADD---ADHD/show/175  ; and will be happy to answer any questions.
757137 tn?1347196453
"Is there some other tyoe of issue?"

Yes. Puberty.
189897 tn?1441126518
COMMUNITY LEADER
   at 10?
171768 tn?1324230099
doesn't sound like puberty, and I don't know too much about ADD.I have worked with children diagnosed with short-term memory problems.  Does she display these characteristics in other aspects of her life? There are also many other things that can cause a lack of focus on task. In her case, they may be mild enough to have her slide under the radar until now, especially if she has learned compensation techniques. An evaluation certainly couldn't hurt. I would also speak more to the school and get their input.

I love the idea of trying to teach her more organization and compensation techniques. To begin to train her to stay focused on what you ask of her, you may want to get a small timer to keep on hand and say "I want you to ____ and you have ___ minutes to get it done." Discuss in advance what the consequence will be if it isn't accomplished. I do this with a student who is very unfocused and it has helped a lot. Make the consequences logical. For example, if she has to sweep the kitchen before watching TV and doesn't do it, then she skips the TV. There are times when the child makes a genuine effort but can't beat the time. Of course I am flexible and say "I saw you were trying hard to finish but couldn't. That is very important, so I can give you more time (or help if the situation calls for it)."
Most kids by 10 have an iPod touch or something similar. Kudos to you if you have avoided it until now, but if you haven't, you may want to utilize some apps. Set reminders to go off at specific times asking if she has done x,y, or z. Have it go off before bedtime asking if her homework is in her folder and in her backpack. This is a trick I use :) I do make sure to set the timers to sound at times when I know I will be in a place where I can attend to the reminder.

I also want to add that she sounds a LOT like me at that age. I don't have ADD but have realized looking back that I have always had some sensory issues. Even now they continue to interfere with my focus, but growing up I learend plenty of compensation techniques. I was very bright and very lazy, as well as generally unsupervised when it came to homework because my mom worked evenings and my grandparents didn't know better. My study habits were terrible. I remember lying to my teachers about assignments. I still had all A's, but was terrible about doing my work. Some may argue I was not being challenged enough, but I was just as lazy about the Gifted and Talented tasks.  You may want to take a look at your routine after school and see if there is way to have more structure and supervision to homework time. I would have hated it, but it probably would have forced me to be better about homework.
757137 tn?1347196453
Yes, you can be entering puberty at 10. It is not in the least uncommon for southern Europeans, Semites, or Middle Easterners to start developing breasts at age nine and reach menarche at age 11. Northern Europeans are usually a little later as are those from the far East.
Avatar universal
Thank you all for your comments! I've found each of them helpful. I should have been clearer as to the symptoms we're faced with so I'll try now.

Extreme forgetfulness in ALL aspects of her life...home, school and all others.
Over the top attitude at times, especially when she has forgotten ans had to be reminded multiple times.
Extreme disorganization in all aspects of her life.
Inability to get organized despite my best and repeated efforts to help her.

I will say-I have repeatedly tried to help her get organized through many different tools at school and home. Nothing has really helped. We've talked about what's happening with her and she doesn't understand it. She lacks motivation as well.

In her history she has been through a divorce but it was several years ago and she has recovered quite well so I wouldn't think She had counseling to help bridge the gap and did well with it. Since then I've met someone, slowly moved forward with the help of the same counselor and we have made a family together. My daughter is healthy and happy on that front- we all worked hard together with our pastor and counselor to be sure we were making sound decisions for her. Now we're all worried about what's happening now. I just feel at loose ends. I truly feel like I want to have her seen so I believe I'm just going to make the appointment if for no other reason than to rule out anything serious.

What type of doctor would I need to make an appointment with?

189897 tn?1441126518
COMMUNITY LEADER
     Good points by tiredbuthappy!    
Ashley (in the book I recommended - chapt. 2) lists 7 different types of doctors and the advantageous of each.  Its too long for me to quote.  But I would not go through a pediatrician unless its a developmental pediatrician.   But, whoever you go through make sure that you get more then just the magic pill.  There is a lot that can be done at home and at school without using meds (and they ultimately might be necessary) if it is in the AD/HD spectrum. But you need to know the cause to apply the correct procedure - so I think you are taking the right course.  Best wishes.
Avatar universal
I have been diagnosed with AD/HD inattentive type, also often call ADD. Much of what you say sound like me or things I am starting to see in my 8 year old daughter not that she's getting older. I think the best way to handle these things are by helping her with some of the suggestions mentioned above. You have to "re-program" her to function in a way that she remembers things and stays on task. I have tried medication and it helps a little but it makes me hyper focused on some things and I still forget about or put off others. My therapist has said that medication is not going to make me do things that I don't want to do, and she's right. I know I function best when things are organized, which makes it easier for my brain to handle completing the task. I like the suggestion of using timers to remind her of tasks and giving her a time limit to complete the task. I think I may have to try some things I've read on here.
171768 tn?1324230099
I agree that a developmental pediatrician or a pediatric neurologist would be the best place to start. They may find nothing wrong, or they may find a medical reason for her behaviors. Medication is not always indicated, and you will not be forced to medicate her. If you know what the problem is (or isn't), then you can begin to take different steps. For example, if the evaluations find nothing, then you can focus more on social-emotional reasons.

I did hit puberty very young too- definitely by 10. But I doubt that was the cause of my difficulties. They started way before that.
Avatar universal
Thanks so much everyone! You all have given me so much information to work with and in all honestly helped to set my mind at ease. I appreciate all you comments.
I'm going to have her evaluated to see what is or is not going on. I prefer no meds unless absolutely necessary but I'll leave it open since I have no idea what's going on. I love the ideas about ways to super-structure her day in order to help her set herself in order.. We've tried the timer idea. Sometimes it really helps her and others she falls off the rails. It seems to really depend on her focus on a given day.
Either way-we're going to see what's happening here!
Again-thanks so much!
-C
Avatar universal
Hi Cathie228! I feel like you could be writing about my daughter, who is almost 9. What course of action did you end up taking with your daughter? TIA!
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