mainly it is just based on symptoms.
(1) If you have already thought your child might have ADD, you will undoubtedly find a doctor who will diagnose him with that ailment. It is a very popular and faddish diagnosis, which is not to say that a proportion of those being treated do not have problems. (2) If he is under seven or eight years of age, don't even consider it.
Frankly, if my child had ADHD/ADD, I would want to know about it as soon as possible so I could start to do things to help my child that would be quite different than if my child did not have ADHD. To say that you should not consider getting your child diagnosed until they are 7 or 8 kinda of eliminates a year or two of possible help for them and you.
Hi Can you tell us a little about your child?
It seems these days that almost every Child has ADD or ADHD and that the Doctors hand out drugs as if they are Candy. With out looking at everything in the person life. And with out looking at blood levels and testing for other things.
These drugs have very bad side effects and have even been know to kill people ,or cause a stroke or Seizures and can damage other parts of the body. These drugs are a lot like speed witch we all know is well know on the street.
If you take your child to the Doctors I wouldn't even mention ADD or ADHD ,I would ask for testing to be done to blood levels and to the brain they can check the brain by doing a EEG and a MRI if they find something after doing a EEG.
Vitamin B6 and Vitamin B12 and Omega 3-6-9 along with a Child's Multivitamin are better for them that these drugs they give out, and don't have the very bad side effects.
I think if you have concerns-------- your next steps could vary depending on how old he is. If he is in the school setting, you can ask for a formal evaluation from the school district. If he is younger, you can still do that and then your child could enter the early intervention program/preschool provided by your local school district by law. You could see a child psychiatrist as well for an evaluation but in my area, diagnosis of add/adhd isn't done until a child is at least 6 due to such variability with kids. But you can start some behavioral strategies at least before 6.
Also look into sensory integration disorder as it is also a problem with a child's nervous system like add/adhd and they can look very much alike. They are treated differently though.
My son was diagnosed at 4 with sensory integration disorder and early intervention was the best possible thing that could have happened for him. I highly recommend investigating what is going on with a child. If it is nothing, that is great. If it is something------- the earlier you try to help, the better. My son is doing fantastic and we have his early diagnosis to thank for it. good luck