No one wants to be told there is something wrong with their child - whether it be a physical condition or a learning disability. When you are told that your child needs to be evaluated for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), you may feel scared and even confused. That is only natural. After all, you likely don't know how the evaluation will be done or what an ADHD diagnosis can mean for your child. Here are three things you need to know about ADHD evaluations and treatment options.
1. It can be an extensive process.
There is no single test for ADHD evaluation. Doctors usually perform various tests to determine whether or not your child has ADHD. They will usually spend some time observing your child and how they behave and react in certain situations.
Doctors will also likely want to discuss the child's behavior with you, other family members, and teachers. This will help them get a bigger picture of how your child acts on a daily basis. Your child will also likely have blood tests done to rule out health conditions and speak with a psychiatrist to undergo psychological evaluations before an ADHD diagnosis will be given.
2. Medication may not be enough treatment for your child.
Putting your child on prescription medication for ADHD treatment can be stressful. You worry about the things that they ingest all the time, so of course you worry about them taking medication every day. Some parents think that medication should be enough, but some ADHD cases are so severe that the child needs additional treatment to help with their symptoms.
Many children with ADHD need to see a psychiatrist for therapy to help control their symptoms. These therapy sessions can help them learn new ways of coping with the stress that ADHD brings to their life, as well as better ways to navigate through social situations as they adjust to their medication.
Some parents even try to do just counseling instead of medication. Much like there is no one way to diagnose ADHD, there is no one size fits all treatment either. It may take you and the doctors several tries before they find a treatment that works for your child.
3. The treatment that works now may stop working later.
Unfortunately, when it comes to ADHD treatment, what works for your child right now may not work later on down the road. There are a variety of reasons your child's ADHD treatment can stop working. For instance, as they grow taller and gain more weight, the medication dosage won't have the same effect on them anymore. Also, changes in your child's life can have an effect on how they respond to their ADHD treatment.
So, if you notice that your child's symptoms are no longer being controlled by their ADHD treatment, make an appointment with your child's doctor to evaluate what other options are available.