The Process of Diagnosing ADD and ADHD


If you suspect your child may have ADD or ADHD it is important to have him or her evaluated by a professional. The child may have common symptoms of the disorders such as poor concentration, or hyperactivity but that does not mean that the ADD/ADHD is the culprit. There could be other medical conditions or disorders that are causing the common symptoms. Having the child be evaluated by an ADD and ADHD specialist will help get the best results.

Determining if a child has ADD or ADHD is crucial to helping with his or her issues. Since there are no imagery and laboratory tests available at this time to diagnose ADD and ADHD, a specialist will base their diagnosis on observing the child’s behavior. This is crucial in determining if the child in fact does have ADD and ADHD, or if he or she has a different disorder or medical condition.

An evaluation for a child should include a few steps to getting the most accurate result. A thorough look into the child’s medical and family history is important. This helps the specialist learn about the family and determine if any medical conditions are common in the child’s relatives. Interviews with the child, the parents, and even their teacher will help the specialist learn about the child’s behavior. A physical and neurological exam is another step of the evaluation. Screening tools for ADD and difference between add adhd should be used. Psychological tests are also common during an evaluation since they provide results on the child’s social and emotional adjustments and their IQ.

The child must have numerous symptoms in hyperactivity, inattention, or impulsivity in order to be diagnosed. The specialist will want to know a few factors in the child’s issues. This includes how long such symptoms have occurred. Symptoms have to be present for at least 6 months before the disorders can be diagnosed. Since ADD and ADHD start in childhood, symptoms have to occur before the age of seven, so another factor the specialist will want to know is at what age the symptoms started. Specialists also want the knowledge of where the symptoms occur. In order to evaluate for the disorder, symptoms have to occur in various settings.

After the child has gone through the evaluation, if he or she has been determined to have ADD or ADHD the process of treatment begins. Medication is the common option, but not everyone wants that for their child. There are other ways to help. Therapy and behavioral coaching can be all your child needs to treat the disorder.


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