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Review ARTICLE Provisionally accepted The full-text will be published soon. Notify me

Front. Integr. Neurosci. | doi: 10.3389/fnint.2019.00040

Sensory over-responsivity as an added dimension in ADHD

  • 1Faculty of Health and Medicine, University of Newcastle, Australia
  • 2University of Newcastle, Australia
  • 3Virginia Commonwealth University, United States

Years of research have added to our understanding of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). None-the-less there is still much that is poorly understood. There is a need for, and ongoing interest in, developing a deeper understanding of this disorder to optimally identify risk and better inform treatment. Here we present a compilation of findings from our laboratory, examining ADHD both behaviorally and using neurophysiologic markers. Drawing on early work of McIntosh and co-investigators, we examined response to sensory challenge in children with ADHD, measuring HPA activity and electrodermal response secondary to sensory stressors. In addition, we have examined the relationship between these physiologic measures, and reports of behavioral sensory over-responsivity and anxiety. Findings suggest that sensory responsivity differentiates among children with ADHD and warrants consideration. We link these findings with research conducted both prior to and after our own work and emphasize that there a growing knowledge supporting a relationship between ADHD and sensory over-responsivity, but more research is needed. Given the call from the National Institute of Health to move towards a more dimensional diagnostic process for mental health concerns, and away from the more routine categorical diagnostic process, we suggest sensory over-responsivity as a dimension in the diagnostic process for children with ADHD.

Keywords: ADHD (Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder), Anxiety, cortisol, EDR, Children, sensory over responsivity

Received: 28 Jan 2019; Accepted: 02 Aug 2019.

Copyright: © 2019 Lane and Reynolds. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) and the copyright owner(s) are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.

* Correspondence:
Prof. Shelly J. Lane, Faculty of Health and Medicine, University of Newcastle, Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia,
Dr. Stacey Reynolds, Virginia Commonwealth University, Richmond, 23284, Virginia, United States,