What is ADHD?
ADHD stands for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.
• ADHD is a neurobehavioral disorder that affects children, adolescents, and adults.
• ADHD is commonly referred to as AD/HD and ADD, but the correct term is ADHD. Throughout this Web site, we will use the term ADHD.
• ADHD shows itself as a persistent pattern of inattention with or without hyperactivity/impulsivity that is more frequent and severe than is typically seen in one's peers.
• ADHD is a real disorder. The brain uses various chemicals to help send messages across the nervous system. An imbalance of these chemical messengers may result in the inattentive and hyperactive/impulsive symptoms of ADHD.
Only a trained health care professional can accurately diagnose ADHD.
The diagnosis of ADHD/ADD is determined by a good assessment. Unfortunately, there are both untrained people overdiagnosing ADHD/ADD as well as untrained people underdiagnosing ADD/ADHD. The only way to diagnose ADD/ADHD is through a thorough clinical interview with the individual as well as their family members. This is used along with educator input and physical evaluation to fully diagnose this condition.
The most effective treatment for ADHD/ADD is medication combined with therapy or coaching and it is important to work closely with at physician who is knowledgeable of ADHD/ADD. At BelliAcres Pediatrics, we understand that it is a very big decision whether the child, adolescent or adult will decide whether medication is right for them. We are respectful of your views on medication and will work with you if you'd like to take it slow, try alternative methods first, or discuss your concern.
We recognize that the medications for ADHD are effective but are associated with a wide variety of side effects. Through our 30+ years of experience with this disorder we have developed the knowledge and skill to minimize side effects and maximize effectiveness of these medications. This fine tuning requires regular contact with your physician and we, as is true with all our patients, are always available to discuss your progress and concerns with this therapy.
We team with you,your teachers, guidance counselors and behavioral therapists to optimize therapy and ensure success.
We also have expertise and resources for the common co-morbid diagnoses that many patients with ADHD share like anxiety, depression, learning disabilities, sleep disorders, oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) and autism.