Here are some of our FAQs. If you can’t find the answer below, feel free to reach out to us via phone or online contact form.
The general recommendation form the American Academy of pediatrics is to have children screened for ADHD starting at four years old. Before this point, many behaviors which may appear to be consistent with an ADHD diagnosis are actually neuro-typical developmentally appropriate behaviors. In extreme cases, earlier evaluation can be considered.
Understanding the causes of ADHD has been a goal of developmental science for the last several decades. This research has enabled the field to narrow down potential causes to several key contributors. However, there are few specific causes which have been identified in the literature that can cause ADHD on their own.
One of the most common causes of ADHD is genetics, as ADHD is often passed from parent to child. For example, parents of children with ADHD are over 25% likely to have the disorder themselves, and there are often other individuals in the family that share the diagnosis.
Aside from inborn characteristics, ADHD symptoms can also arise from prenatal exposures (e.g., alcohol nicotine), prematurity, lead poisoning, and head trauma, among other causes.
Importantly, research has identified many factors that do not cause ADHD, such as: playing video games, watching TV, immunizations, food additives, eating sugar, or allergies.
Although many pediatricians are experts in identifying and helping parents manage ADHD, there are often cases in which a child can be misdiagnosed due to the limited experience the clinician has with the disorder or the child. This is often due to the fact that ADHD symptoms can arise from other causes, such as an underlying learning difficulty, emotional difficulty, or other neuropsychological factors.
Furthermore, as the treatment for ADHD often includes medication, parents of children with these difficulties often want to ensure that their child has the disorder before giving medication.
In addition to providing evaluation for ADHD, our neuropsychologists also provide individual psychotherapy and behavioral training for families and individuals with ADHD. This includes seeing the child or adult with the disorder as well as working with the parents to learn skills and implement systems to manage the disorder at home.
As of yet, there is no cure for ADHD. The various medications that are found to be beneficial for helping children manage the disorder do not change the underlying neurological structure which gives rise to the disorder.
In addition, behavioral training and modification systems are helpful in providing an environment in which the individual can succeed, but they often do not remediate the underlying problem. Some researchers refer to this as a “prosthetic environment” which the individual with ADHD will need to learn to use throughout their life.