How much do you know about ADHD? There’s a fair chance that someone in your immediate circle is affected by it. According to a recent study in JAMA (Journal of the American Medical Association), roughly one in ten children and teens in the U.S. face challenges of this common neurodevelopmental disorder. The CDC also says that about five percent of U.S. adults struggle with it.
ADHD is typically characterized by three main behaviors/symptoms including inattention (easily distracted), hyperactivity, and impulsivity.
Child Neurology Consultant of Austin’s board-certified pediatric neurologist Dr. Lindsay Elton recently served on a professional panel to break down the basics of this neurological condition for an article in HealthCentral.
Here are some of the key questions Dr. Elton helped answer for readers:
When and how should I seek an ADHD diagnosis for my child?
If you notice by the time your child is six years old that they are displaying symptoms of ADHD, it may be time to contact your pediatrician. If your pediatrician is unable to make a diagnosis, seek guidance from an educator at your child’s school or a licensed mental health professional such as a clinical psychologist, neuropsychologist, psychiatrist or clinical social worker who specializes in ADHD in children and teenagers.
What other conditions often go hand-in-hand with ADHD?
Those with ADHD also frequently meet the diagnostic criteria for another mental health issue. When discussing your child’s diagnosis, make sure to talk to your healthcare provider about additional screenings for learning and developmental disorders, autism, anxiety, sleep disorders, Tourette Syndrome, depression, bipolarity, and obsessive-compulsive disorder.
How is ADHD best treated?
Dr. Elton says that the best plan for treating ADHD is with a 360-degree approach encompassing multiple therapies and input from several parties including parents, physicians, and teachers. “Skills in areas like organization and time management, learning how to behave appropriately in school and social settings, along with prescription medications are all valuable tools to help ease symptoms of your child’s ADHD and help them succeed.”
In addition to ADHD and autism, Child Neurology Consultants of Austin also has experience treating a wide range of other neurological and rheumatic disorders in children and teenagers from 0 to 21 years old. For an appointment with one of our specialists, or to learn more about our services, please contact us here.