Treating ADHD often requires medical, educational, behavioral and psychological intervention. This comprehensive approach to treatment is sometimes called “multimodal” and, depending on the age of the individual with ADHD, may include:
- parent training
- skills training
- behavioral therapy
- educational supports
- education regarding ADHD
Working closely with health care providers and other professionals, treatment should be tailored to the unique needs of each individual and family to help the patient control symptoms, cope with the disorder, improve overall psychological well-being and manage social relationships.
Centers for Disease Control
For children with ADHD younger than 6 years of age, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends parent training in behavior management as the first line of treatment, before medication is tried. For children 6 years of age and older, the recommendations include medication and behavior therapy together — parent training in behavior management for children up to age 12 and other types of behavior therapy and training for adolescents. Schools can be part of the treatment as well. AAP recommendations also include adding behavioral classroom intervention and school supports.
Children with ADHD often benefit from behavior therapy, social skills training, parent skills training and counseling, which may be provided by a psychiatrist, psychologist, social worker or other mental health professional. Some children with ADHD may also have other conditions such as an anxiety disorder or depression. In these cases, counseling may help both ADHD and the coexisting problem. If your child is being treated for ADHD, he or she should see the doctor regularly until symptoms have largely improved, and then typically every three to six months if symptoms are stable.
The best results occur when a team approach is used, with teachers, parents, therapists and physicians working together. Educate yourself about ADHD and available services.
Toronto Sick Kids Hospital – About Kids Health: How To Help Your Child At Home
Center For ADHD Awareness Canada – Understanding ADHD Ages 0-6 yrs
Center For ADHD Awareness Canada – Understanding ADHD Ages 7-17 yrs