For many parents, raising a child can be difficult enough. But when your child begins to have difficulty at school, in social settings, or even at home, it can make parenting that much more stressful. Alternatively, the everyday stressors of maintaining a career, education, healthy social life or everyday routine can become even more difficult if you find yourself struggling with attention issues.
At Traini Counseling Group we understand that all you want for yourself and your child is to be happy and healthy. If you believe you or your child is showing symptoms of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, commonly known as ADHD, know that you’re starting in the right place.
What is Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder?
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common neurobehavioral disorders of childhood and can profoundly affect a person’s health, education and social interactions. Children are most commonly diagnosed with ADHD between the ages of four and 18. Before the age of four, children are often still developing rapidly, making diagnosis difficult, while preteens and teenagers can also be difficult to diagnose, as many of their symptoms can overlap with fluctuations in mood and self-esteem.
It’s important for parents and individuals to keep in mind that there is no single test for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder and that many symptoms of the disorder can be similar to other mental health disorders and disabilities.
The most common symptoms and signs of ADHD include:
- Inattention: You or your child or teen may wander off task or have a hard time maintaining focus. You may often be disorganized and have issues comprehending things.
- Hyperactivity: You may find yourself or your child constantly fidgeting, restless or “chatty,” including in situations in which it may not be appropriate. Often parents comment on their child’s seemingly “endless energy.”
- Impulsivity: While children can seem impulsive in general, an individual with ADHD tends to make impulsive actions that may seem socially unacceptable, morally questionable, or even put them in harm’s way.
What are Early Signs of ADHD?
Early symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder include but are not limited to:
- Constant fidgeting
- Inability or trouble playing quietly
- Excessive talking and/or interrupting
- Easily distracted/Inability to focus
- Inability to finish tasks
- Difficulty comprehending certain tasks or assignments
- Often forgetful or careless
How is ADHD Evaluated and Diagnosed?
Our psychologists at Traini Counseling Group use the guidelines in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, Fifth edition (DSM-5,) to help diagnose ADHD. This diagnostic standard helps ensure that we appropriately diagnose and treat individuals for ADHD.
In order to evaluate and diagnose you or your child for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder, we like to remind parents and individuals that it’s important to collect crucial information about you or your child’s behavior and how it affects life at home, in school, and in other social settings. For parents, we’ll want you to gain insight from your child’s teachers and any other caregivers. Our psychologists will want to know what symptoms you or your child is showing, how long these symptoms of inattention or symptoms of hyperactivity have occured, and how these symptoms affect you or your child and your family.
In addition to all of this, we’ll also gather information about your family history and your or your child’s medical history.
What May Happen During ADHD Evaluations?
Testing for ADHD can include such things as:
- Face-to-face clinical interviews with one of our psychologists with you and/or your child.
- Behavioral and academic rating scales completed by you and/or a teacher.
- Review of previous medical, school and assessment records, if applicable.
- Developmental assessments.
- Outside medication consultations by a developmental pediatrician.
- Intellectual, academic/learning, or neuropsychological testing.
- School visits or observations.
How Do I Begin?
We understand that this information for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder can be overwhelming. As always, we’re here for you at Traini Counseling Group. Parents, we urge you to begin collecting information about and for your child now, and reach out to us with any questions you may have, or for scheduling an appointment. We’re here to help every step of the way.
Because we’re ready for you! Please don’t hesitate to call us at our office, email us or use our online form by clicking the button below. Whenever you’re ready, we’re here to help you thrive!