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Guideline for ADHD

A health professional, a teacher, you or your spouse has suggested that your child may have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). While this may seem overwhelming, the following information can help you understand and follow your child’s treatment. This does not give you the exact treatment for every child, but rather it gives you a general idea of what to expect.

  1. At your first visit, your doctor or therapist will gather information about medical, family and school history. You and your child’s teacher may be given forms to fill out. Your doctor may want your child to have other tests.
  2. Your child will need a plan, and you and your doctor will decide on the next steps. You will get information about talk therapy and medicine from your doctor.
  3. There are different medicines to help children with ADHD. Your doctor will explain the different medicines to you and help you understand how each one works.
  4. If medication is started, your child should have a return visit within 30 days of starting the medication to see how much the medicine is helping your child. Plan to see the doctor for at least two additional visits within nine months of the return visit.
  5. Make sure your child takes the medication exactly as the doctor ordered. If the medicine doesn’t help in the first 7-10 days, let your doctor know.
  6. If your child does not respond to treatment, your doctor may send you to a child psychiatrist. These physicians specialize in treating young children with behavior or attention problems.
  7. If talk therapy is started, you will:
    • Talk about problems in your family
    • Talk about other problems with your child
    • Get information about how you can help your child
  8. Programs in addition to what is covered by insurance that might also help:
    • Parent support groups
    • Summer day programs for children
    • Social skills training for children
  9. If you don’t feel that you have a “connection” with your doctor/therapist by the second or third office visit, don’t give up or stop treatment. Talk with your doctor or therapist first. If you need to, call New Directions and we will use our information to try to get you a better match.

Additional ADHD Self-Help Resources

Adopted: 5/2000
Last Updated: 6/2019
Last Reviewed: 6/2019