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Thursday, November 3, 2011

How do I get tested for ADHD or ADD?

It's a common misunderstanding that you can take your child to "get tested for ADHD." There is no test for ADHD for children or adults. There are no blood tests, no brain scans, no brain-wave tests, and no written tests that you or your child can do that will "reveal" ADHD.

There is no test for ADHD, just subjective
screening forms and questions. The criteria for
ADHD have nothing to do with attention span.
The assumption is that a child's misbehavior
is because they can't pay attention.
There are screening forms (written or computerized) that some professionals use to assist in determining whether or not a child or adult is suffering from ADHD; however, these should only ever constitute a small part of the evaluation process.

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ADHD itself is just an arbitrary set of behaviors that can be observed where the cause of each or all the behaviors in the set are not scientifically known.

There are other posts about ADHD in the blog you may find interesting. 

There are two primary types of treatments for ADHD - medications or behavior modification. Medications are effective with behavior modification and behavior modification is effective with or without medications. However, the first line of treatment should always be behavior modification since stimulant medication can be inappropriate for younger children and the long term effects of stimulants are not known but may include stunted growth, cardiovascular accidents, amphetamine addiction, and increased substance abuse.

Many people say that they have tried behavior modification, however, they often have done it incorrectly or received bad advice on how to develop an effective behavior modification plan to address the array of behavior problems within the ADHD construct.

Mental Health Disclaimer: The information included in this post and blog are for educational purposes only. It is not intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional mental health treatment or medical advice. The reader should always consult his or her mental health provider to determine the appropriateness of the information for their own situation or if they have any questions regarding a mental health or medical condition or treatment plan. Reading the information on this website does not create a therapist-patient relationship.

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