An Accurate Diagnosis is Just the Beginning

Eileen Bailey Health Guide
  • Last week, during the Adult ADHD Summit, (you can view the summit here) one of the topics of discussion was "the importance of having an accurate diagnosis."


    This is such an important topic, as all the panelists at the summit agreed. Dr. Hallowell had compared the diagnosis of ADHD to wearing eyeglasses, while it is certainly possible for many people that need glasses to get along in life without them, having glasses makes it that much easier. Taking this point one step further, having the right glasses is even more important.


    No two diagnosis of ADHD are the same. ADHD is unique to each individual. While some people with ADHD may have the most difficulty with organization or time management, another may have a hard time with impulsiveness or hyperactivity.

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    Treatment plans must be catered to the individual and to the specific challenges him or her faces. Just as you would not wear another person's glasses and expect to see well, you cannot "put on" another person's treatment plan for ADHD and expect it to work for your life.


    But often, that is exactly what happens. Someone recently diagnosed with ADHD may know someone else that was previously diagnosed with ADHD. They may ask about the treatment that person is receiving and assume the treatment will work for him or her as well. This just isn't necessarily the case.


    There are a number of different medications available for ADHD and each are available in numerous dosages. Frequently, a trial and error period is needed to determine which medication, and which dosage, will work best for you.


    In addition to medication, behavior modification plans, therapy and coaching can all help individuals with ADHD succeed, with or without medication.


    Individuals with ADHD can benefit from working closely with their medical professional to come up with a plan specific to his or her situation.


    The following tools on this site can help you to create a working plan for your ADHD:


    What is Multimodal Treatment and Why is it Important?


    How Do You Know if a Treatment is Working?


    Creating a Treatment Plan


    Behavior Modification

Published On: December 08, 2008