Sluggish cognitive tempo (SCT) isn’t an official medical diagnosis buthas a lot in common with some types of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). People with SCT have trouble focusing and paying attention, but they’re less likely to be impulsive or hyperactive.
It was first identified in the mid-1980s, and doctors are still trying to figure out how to define it and why it happens. Some researchers who study SCT call it concentration deficit disorder.
Someone with SCT may not be able to process information as quickly as others and may have a hard time with schoolwork, decision-making, or social relationships. They also might:
To diagnose SCT, a psychiatrist or psychologist will ask about your child’s behavior and emotions. They may also ask you or a teacher to fill out a questionnaire about your child.
- Stimulants like methylphenidate (Ritalin) may help with focus and attention, like they do in people with ADHD.
- Antidepressants can ease anxiety or depression.
- Therapy or special education programs may help with processing information, organization, and social skills.
- Good sleep habits, a healthy diet, and regular exercise can help with sleepiness and concentration problems.
Doctors are still trying to figure out what combination of these things works best for SCT.