Learn About the Diagnosis and Treatment of ADHD

At present, ADHD can only be diagnosed through clinical tests. Doctors will invite the child and his or her primary caregivers (which may include family members and teachers) to conduct clinical interviews or fill out questionnaires, and conduct clinical observations of the child’s behavior to learn more. Behavior in a situation. Records of childhood behavior can be used to diagnose ADHD in adulthood.

Psychological testing and self-assessment

The Test of Daily Attention for Children (Second Edition), or TEA-Ch2, is often used to measure attention levels to reduce memory bias and interpretation bias of certain symptoms. By comparing the child’s performance in attention, sustained and selective attention within one hour, the symptoms can be interpreted, treatment methods provided and treatment progress monitored.

Doctors will also use the Attention and Self-Control Scale (SWAN), the ADHD Rating Scale (ADHD-RS) or the Connors Scale to evaluate the child’s behavior in different aspects and check for other diseases. The Adult ADHD Self-Report Scale (ASRS) is used to diagnose ADHD in adults.

Drug treatments and their side effects

Most studies indicate that drug treatment is more effective than behavioral training or cognitive behavioral therapy alone. There are two main types of drugs for treating ADHD:

  1. Stimulants are used as the first-line treatment for ADHD. They can increase the levels of dopamine and norepinephrine between neurons, especially in the frontal lobes of the brain. Preschool children usually develop stimulants thirty years after taking them. Takes effect after minutes. The most common side effects of stimulants are loss of appetite, insomnia, gastrointestinal discomfort, dizziness, mood swings, tics, and in rare cases, irritability. These side effects are usually mild and transient, and improve with time and dosage. Examples of doping include:
    • Methylphenidate (also known as Ritalin)
    • Concerta
    • Lisdexamfetamine (also known as Vyvanse, lysine amphetamine)

      Stimulants can be misused and abused. Scheduling medication holidays (such as stopping medication on weekends or longer) can reduce the side effects of medications. People with heart disease or congenital heart disease should consult a doctor before taking stimulants.
  2. Non-stimulants can simultaneously treat other co-existing conditions such as depression and avoid the side effects of stimulants. However, the onset of effect is slow, usually taking several weeks. Common non-stimulants include:
    • Atomoxetine (also known as Strattera) may cause nausea, vomiting, dizziness, abnormal liver function, and in rare cases, increase suicidal thoughts in patients.
    • Imipramine
    • Clonidine

The effectiveness of behavioral therapy or training

Behavioral therapy or training refers to the promotion of good behavior through changes in the external or social environment, such as rewards, breaks, or small punishments. Research shows that combining behavioral training and drug treatment is more effective than behavioral therapy alone, and is the first choice for preschool children, while older children must cooperate with drug treatment. Accompanying children for behavioral training can improve the parent-child relationship. Parents should also consider using concurrent psychotherapy to relieve symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Parents and schools can cooperate and help patients through different measures. Parents can organize daily schedules, eliminate distractions, and use charts and checklists; schools can arrange for children to sit next to the teacher or give them longer time to take tests, etc.

Although there is insufficient data to support it, cognitive behavioral therapy may be useful for some adults, such as those who focus on executive function training.

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