What you need to know about an ADHD diagnosis:
Children: Do you ever wonder why your child most times seems fidgety, inattentive, hyperactive, and impulsive?
Adults: Do you suspect ADHD because you’re losing things all the time? Is staying organized challenging for you? Are you easily distracted?
Most believe that if those symptoms are present, then most likely they have ADHD. Let’s say that it might be easy to conclude that, after all, it is what we hear most of the time, even from seasoned mental health professionals. However, diagnosing ADHD based on those symptoms alone is not correct because those symptoms tend to be present in all of us at some point or another. In addition, ADHD does not materialize the same in every person.
What else may be happening?
Some symptoms of ADHD are often confused with other medical conditions or disorders. For example, ADHD commonly co-occurs with anxiety, depression, learning disorders, behavioral problems, and substance abuse. Therefore, it is important to perform a complete comprehensive assessment to rule out other potential causes for the symptoms being experienced.
How is ADHD actually Diagnosed?
The appropriate assessment requires a comprehensive evaluation which includes a review of the child or the adult’s medical history to rule out any other cause, a psychological clinical interview with the person, relatives, formal testing, behavioral observations from the psychologist, parents, teachers, and others as needed.
How is the evaluation going to benefit me?
The results will guide your treatment plan. Other advantages include an emotional relief. For example, there is often low self-esteem, frustration, and embarrassment associated with challenges encountered due to ADHD. However, knowing that these difficulties have an explanation, can be empowering, as you can now do something about it. Another advantage includes the specific accommodations in school and workplace that may be granted.
What are the treatment options?
There are treatments available such as medication, psychological and psychoeducational interventions that can help you overcome these challenges.