ADHD and ADD Treatment: Traditional and Additional Options for Children and Adults
Are you or your child struggling with attention deficit issues? Which ADHD or ADD treatment is a good course of action? Who can help you take the best next steps? There are several treatment options that are possible for these conditions. They include both traditional methods as well as additional steps that you can take.
Consider the following:
Traditional ADHD and ADD Treatment
One traditional ADHD or ADD treatment method is behavioral therapy. This can be useful for both children and adults.
It can include:
- Having something to fidget with to redirect energy, such as a pencil
- Staying organized and on-task
- Ensuring projects are done on time
- Learning how to cope with impulsivity
It is important to note that you need to talk to a therapist about your emotions surrounding ADD/ADHD. Most likely, you or your child have had situations arise that created negative emotions.
For example, being made fun of in school for being forgetful or reprimanded at work for not staying on task are common. These experiences can leave emotional wounds that need to be addressed.
Another option typical for ADHD/ ADD treatment is medication. Medication can help by allowing you or your child to better focus and maintain attention. Typical medications include stimulants, which act quickly but dissipate quickly as well. Non-stimulant medications are also an option. They require more time to take effect but last longer in the bloodstream.
Some examples of stimulant medications include:
Strattera and Intuniv are non-stimulant medications. Consult with a physician, as these are all drugs that require a prescription.
If your child has been diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, their school will be able to provide accommodations.
For instance, your child’s school may allow them to have extra time for taking tests or let them take the test in a different, distraction-free room. There may also be various other learning support resources available for your child to be successful at school.
For adults, some accommodation is possible at the college level. At work, the situation is more confusing. While ADD/ADHD is covered under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), state laws will vary. Employers are expected to provide reasonable accommodations. However, these cannot be burdensome to the business.
Additional Treatments for ADD/ADHD
Besides the traditional treatments for ADD/ADHD, there are additional things that you can do as well.
One area to focus on is your diet. Your brain needs energy. The kind of fuel you are putting into your body matters. Include protein with your meals, even breakfast. Protein is used by your brain to create neurotransmitters. These allow the cells in your brain to communicate. Also, make sure that you are getting enough vitamins and minerals. If necessary, consider high-quality supplements. However, do consult first with your physician or nutritionist.
Another ADHD and ADD treatment to consider is exercise. Working out is beneficial for the brain on the whole. Some areas where exercise has a significant impact include:
- Working memory
- Executive functioning
One reason this is possible is that when you exercise, your brain releases endorphins. This is a hormone that affects our mood. Exercise also releases a chemical called Dopamine which helps with maintaining attention.
Getting these benefits is actually very simple. All you need to do is walk four days a week for thirty minutes. With children, encourage and support them to pursue athletic interests, either through organized team sports or on their own. It will help boost their self-confidence, too.
Manage ADHD/ADD with Help from a Therapist
Clearly, ADD/ADHD can cause a lot of problems, yet, there are solutions. You can combine both traditional methods such as medication, behavior therapy, and therapy with lifestyle choices. Together they can allow you to cope and even thrive. At Eddins Counseling Group, located in Houston, we have therapists that specialize in ADHD/ADD management. We also offer child and family therapy that can help manage many issues related to ADHD/ADD. Contact us at 832-559-2622 or book an appointment online. Remember, it is possible to live a successful and productive life, even if you have ADD/ADHD.
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