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Unlocking Potential: How Our ADHD Psychologists Transform Lives with Proven Strategies

In Australia, approximately 6-7% of children struggle with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), a developmental disorder characterized by difficulties with attention, concentration, and impulse control. While symptoms often improve with age, some adults continue to experience ADHD symptoms, which can impact their performance at work and quality of life at home.


What exactly is ADHD?


It's a condition that typically begins in childhood and is classified into three types: Inattention, Hyperactive-Impulsive, and Combined.

children waiting for adhd psychologists

Diagnosing ADHD


To diagnose ADHD, the DSM-V outlines specific symptoms that must be present for at least six months and negatively affect social and academic activities. For children aged 17 and younger, these symptoms include:


Symptoms of Inattention


  • Struggling to pay attention to details or sustain focus

  • Failing to follow instructions or complete tasks

  • Difficulty getting organized or avoiding tasks that require sustained thinking

  • Frequently losing things or getting easily distracted

  • Forgetting daily activities


Symptoms of Hyperactivity and Impulsivity


  • Fidgeting or restlessness

  • Leaving one's seat when expected to remain seated

  • Excessive running or climbing

  • Difficulty playing quietly or waiting for one's turn

  • Interrupting others or blurting out answers


Tailored Treatments for ADHD


Fortunately, managing ADHD often involves a combination of tailored treatments. Our team recommends the following effective strategies:


Medication

Medication, in consultation with a GP, can help manage symptoms. Stimulant medications like methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta) and amphetamines are commonly prescribed and have been shown to be effective in reducing ADHD symptoms. Non-stimulant medications, such as atomoxetine (Strattera), are also available for those who may not respond well to stimulants.


Behavioral Parent Training (BPT) by ADHD Psychologists

Behavioral Parent Training equips parents with strategies to support their child’s behavior. Techniques include positive reinforcement, setting clear rules, and consistent discipline. Studies have shown that BPT can lead to significant improvements in children's behavior and parental mental health.


Social Skills Training

Social Skills Training focuses on improving social interactions by teaching children how to read social cues, control emotions, and communicate effectively. While evidence on its effectiveness is mixed, it can be a valuable adjunct to other treatments.


School-Based Interventions

School-based interventions include behavioral strategies, organizational skills training, and self-regulation techniques. These interventions have strong empirical support and can significantly enhance a child's academic performance and social interactions.


Additional Resources

For parents or individuals seeking more information on managing ADHD, the following resources can be invaluable:

  • CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder): Offers education, advocacy, and support for individuals with ADHD.

  • ADDitude Magazine: Provides practical advice, webinars, and articles on managing ADHD.

  • ADHD Support Australia: An online resource offering courses, events, and a community for parents of children with ADHD.


Duration and Intensity


Since ADHD begins in childhood, symptoms often improve as the child grows older. However, some symptoms may persist into adulthood. The intensity of ADHD can vary depending on the number of symptoms present in each domain (inattention, hyperactive-impulsive, or combined).


Comorbidity


ADHD can co-occur with other disorders, including:


  • Oppositional Defiant Disorder

  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Conduct Disorder

  • Sensory Processing Disorder

  • Learning Disorders

  • Early Speech/Communication Problems


Conclusion


By working together, we can help children with ADHD/ADD overcome their challenges and thrive. With the right combination of medication, behavioral parent training, social skills training, and school-based interventions, children with ADHD can lead successful and fulfilling lives. If you need support, don't hesitate to reach out to our team of ADHD psychologists.

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