ADHD treatment

Although medical research has helped us learn a great deal more about the human body than ever before, doctors are still struggling to understand the human mind and its tendencies. Although doctors understand what symptoms can be used to diagnose psychological conditions, what is still not understood is where these conditions might originate. One of the conditions that is popping up more often and is increasing in prevalence is ADHD, which is also known as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or Attention Deficit Disorder. Essentially, ADHD is a condition in which the patient suffers from an inability to focus on certain tasks due to a hyperactive brain.

Many kids are diagnosed with ADHD in the early ages when they have a difficult time paying attention in school, but ADHD is much more than that. Having difficulty learning is merely a symptom of a much larger problem and failing to understand the disease can cause more problems over the long run. Therefore, it is paramount that someone suffering from ADHD symptoms be treated as soon as possible.

At first, a psychiatrist will usually try to prescribe a stimulant to help the brain cross over into a less hyperactive mode. Although it sounds strange, considering a stimulant is thought to do the opposite, stimulants actually work well on the brain of someone with ADHD to help “offset” the natural hyperactive effects. One of the most popular of the ADHD treatments is Ritalin, which you’ve probably heard of at one time or another. Sometimes though, Ritalin is not effective and a doctor will try an amphetamine based stimulant for an even larger “boost” over the edge. Adderall is one such drug.

One of the downfalls to using stimulants like these is that over time, especially when used for double digit years, a person can get addicted to the drug. If a child takes Ritalin or Adderall for over 10 years, sometimes even less, then it might be very difficult to wean them off of it as they mature. This is why a doctor will also try counseling techniques to try and use natural methods in conjunction with prescription medicine. Since there is no surefire ADHD treatment that is guaranteed to work, your doctor will use trial and error until he or she finds something that works. If the side effects of medication are too strong, then they will continue to try new medicines until either all of the options are exhausted or an effective remedy is found.

Research has shown that a stimulant, such as Adderall or Ritalin, used in conjunction with 8-12 weeks of behavioral therapy, is the best way to reduce the symptoms of ADHD. Since most children that are diagnosed with ADHD usually continue to show symptoms later and life, ADHD is considered a condition that must be managed for life. Although someone can never fully learn to live with it, there are ways to make it manageable.

Over time, you might consider using a combination of more therapy and less medication in order to prevent dependency. In some cases a doctor will also use anti-depressants or anti-psychotics to test their effects on the patient’s mood. However, try to see medication as a temporary treatment rather than a lifetime treatment. Try to focus on therapy as a long term solution and always be understanding of the patient’s needs, whether they be a child, sibling, or other family member. ADHD isn’t a permanent condition by any means, but in some ways it is something that will have to be managed for life. Sometimes, it passes with age, while others might have to deal with a longer duration of symptoms.


Last updated on Jul 7th, 2009 and filed under Mental Health. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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