Learning disabilities can present in a variety of different ways, which can make getting an exact diagnosis a difficult process.
But an exact diagnosis is essential to developing the best plan of action for your child.
Research has uncovered some new ways that ADHD can present. One of these is inconsistent reaction times when the child is performing short-term memory exercises.
This is the kind of memory often referred to as working memory—the kind of memory that allows you to remember what you are doing and stay on task.
Children with ADHD can get the answers right, but do not show the same consistency in response times as their counterparts on these types of exercises, doing math problems, for example.
Children who have more traditional ADHD symptoms, and are more hyperactive, restless, or impulsive, tend to have even slower reaction times than children who have ADHD but do not necessarily have these traditional symptoms.
This is not to say that every child who seems occasionally slow when it comes to answering questions or staying on tasks has ADHD. But this is important new information and may help medical professionals understand more about how ADHD affects child behavior, especially when it presents in a way not associated with hyperactivity.
Learning more about how ADHD affects behavior may help not only with diagnosis, but may help develop better strategies for coping, particularly in the learning environment.