ADHD and Well-being

“The community stagnates without the impulse of the individual
The impulse dies away without the sympathy of the community”

William James

With this powerful quote I started my desk research on my project few days ago. Apart from learning about what ADHD is? I also learnt – whom does it affect, what are the symptoms, diagnosis, private & social costs?

Based on my research, ADHD are differently expressed and the level of diagnosis varies. Some are primarily inattentive, while others are very troubled by hyperactivity and impulsivity. The degree of symptoms also varies greatly from person to person. In most cases it is hereditary therefore people are born with ADHD. ADHD is a life long condition.

Rapid increase in the recent years in the number of people diagnosed with a mental illness raises a number of questions. It is unclear whether the increase is due to an increased public and professional recognition and awareness of mental illness as a debating human condition or to an actual increase in the incidence of individuals suffering form a mental illness.

I am currently reading a research paper published in Rockwool foundation regarding the econometric challenges by cost analysis study group for ADHD.

The goal of the this study paper, is to describe a number of methodological issues that needed to be taken into account in providing an answer to these questions by estimating costs in relation to a long list of indicators measured over the course of an individual’s lifetime: educations attainment, occupational status, income, family situation, criminal record, health, etc.

The baseline results indicate that individuals who have been diagnosed with ADHD later in life have weaker performance. I also learnt in the research paper that Danish households with children with ADHD are found to be more unstable.
Some of the findings that caught my attention are Individuals with ADHD are more likely to be unable to stop themselves from committing a crime that those without ADHD. Moreover, ADHD has a direct effect on education.

With the incredible findings from my research paper, I have also been reading about social change in design and crowd well-being. Pollard and Lee (who have also written elaborately on child well-being) claimed to identify five distinct domains of well-being which are physical psychological, cognitive, social and economic. The studies of well-being have primarily focused on the subjective and individual well being. Subjective wellbeing reflects on individual’s unique experience.

I also came across Sheldon’s new hierarchy of needs illustrating well-being.

I miss you too….

I have often asked myself; where do I belong to, which country I want to live and work for? My passion for traveling never makes me settle down to one country in my thoughts and so I tell myself get a job in any country make sure the job makes you travel around the world. In spite of knowing my answer and I am usually excited to take quizzes like “What Country in the World Best Fits Your Personality”

Yes ! I do belong to you India – no matter where I am, I will work for you.

Ideas are cheap and execution is everything…

I often heard this in my career and can relate to it to my core after running Lucida (a photographer’s collective based in India) for three years prior to CIID. But there is something exciting about coming up with ideas; the sharing discourse on ideas, relaxed and informal approach to thinking itself.

Brainstorming and ideation are sessions where designers/individuals are refrained to judge or criticize any thoughts, which means may be the only public platform where you can be yourself without any judgments. It allows everyone to participate where diversity brings the variety of thoughts.


 
This is exactly how I felt couple of days ago in a brainstorming aimed to shape a new project sponsored by Intel: the Intel IxD Public Media Platform (working title). I enjoyed free and open environment that encourages everyone to participate. To my surprise, the paramount was making a team with people whom I have never worked or interacted with. A two-hour session offered me to learn about others and our ability to connect based on interests.

Initial Statement

Name: Arunima Singh

Nationality: Indian

Background: Photography Design, Film making

I want my final project to….

I believe design has the potential to change the world we live in and I aspire to implement this through every project I will work on; besides, I also believe that good design involves minimal technology intervention making it user friendly, scale-able and cost effective. Healthcare and education are the two subjects very close to my heart. But for the final project, I want to work in the area of health care. I also intend to make my project work become medium to engage with companies I aspire to work for.  I aspire to work with Design consultancies that are working on social Innovation (IDEO and Frog). I hope to make a project which reflects my abilities as designer without loosing much focus on people.

I am inspired by….

Keeping health and education in my mind and based on my investigation on appealing project areas on these subjects in Denmark, I am exploring the possibility of working in the area of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), which is found in children and known as Attention Deficit Disorder in adults.

I am keen on exploring the subject of cognitive diversity in ADD adults or children. My intent is to see how design can be leveraged to help solve/cure problems caused by ADD/ADHD. While technology advancements made in the last decade have enabled us to address several of our challenges better, I believe that there is a significant scope for improvement. Also, we have reached a threshold where incremental changes require tremendous intelligence, innovation and improvisation. I wish to apply them in the areas of social welfare, in particular; education and health care in general. Some of the projects that inspire me are:

Starting Point:

There are lot of debates around ADD/ADHD and theories around it. What has been widely discussed and acceptable is that people with ADD/ADHD display cognitive diversity. I am interested in exploring the aspects of cognitive diversity in ADHD kids. Through my project I intend develop and create a healthier understanding of ADHD and am hoping to realise the possibility of making every child learn.

During the research project, I set out to develop concepts for services and products that make everyday life easier, more fun and less frustrating for ADHD people. By designing for people with ADHD, I aspire to develop the competence to develop design solutions for any kind of situation. Some of the points the questions that I am interested in are:

1) How do we educate ADHD children to take their place in the economies of 21st century?

2) How can we remedy the emotionally distraught brain state, which is inhibiting classroom learning for ADHD children?

3) How might we learn to manage the symptoms of adult ADD/ADHD? (Understanding ADD adults & ADHD children given the challenges of Attention deficit disorder are debatable?

So far my exploration has been limited to literature reading about ADD/ADHD. I have been referring to papers and seminar content on: Emotions, Learning and Education.

Final project and first blog ever !

 

As Simona say’s it going solo, entering the third phase of CIID after an intense and engaging eight months of foundation and investigative projects. I have lived every moment of this program, which also excites me going further solo.  During the coming two months of my final project I want to revisit all my skills that I acquired here. Following the design process and iterative prototyping is my two favourite part of being an interaction designer. I love the way CIID practices the interaction design mantra with the three words.

BUILD. TEST. REPEAT

The rigorous training at CIID has changed they way I perceive design and technology both. I do believe design has the potential to change the world we live in and I certainly aspire to implement this through every project I will work on; besides, I also believe that good design involves minimal technology intervention making it user friendly, scale-able and cost effective.

My starting point for final project went little back in time when I introspected on Alie and David’s comments during my mid-term exams:

Your topic should be relevant to Denmark as this will make it much easier for you to gain first-hand insight. Keep in mind that the process you use can be later transferred to another context and customized according to local needs.

This actually has encouraged me to read Danish newspaper/articles and I am excited to find a topic that I am keen to learn about. For the coming two months I am going to learn more about Attention deficiency hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). I am glad to find a topic which is socially relevant, contextually suitable and hopefully approachable.

Meanwhile this is how class looked like at Day 1


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