"Which is the best type of doctor for ADHD?" This is one of the first things patients ask when getting assessed and treated for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
There are a various types of ADHD doctors that provide treatment for this and similar conditions. They can range from general physicians to those specialized in treating ADHD.
Since they all have their advantages and disadvantages, this article will take a closer look at the different types of ADHD treatment providers to help you find the most appropriate health service providers for you or your loved ones.
Family doctors and pediatricians are often the first to be alerted to potential ADHD symptoms. While they may be familiar with ADHD and can prescribe ADHD medications, it is preferable to be seen by a doctor that specializes in treating ADHD, not a general physician. Family doctors usually refer the patient or family to treatment providers that specialize in assessing and treating ADHD.
Developmental Or Behavioral Pediatricians
Behavioral and developmental pediatricians are qualified to diagnose and treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in children, and typically treat children between ages 5-12. They are specifically trained to treat behavioral and developmental disorders in children and can prescribe medications.
Psychiatrists specialize in diagnosing and treating behavioral and mental disorders. They primarily prescribe ADHD medications but can also provide individual and family therapy. They are also qualified to perform diagnostic testing. One obstacle that may arise is one of availability. It can be difficult to find and get a timely appointment with a board certified child psychiatrist.
Neurologists diagnose and treat neurological and nervous system disorders. They can perform ADHD testing and diagnosis, and can prescribe ADHD medications. However, they do not provide behavioral therapy or counseling services.
Mental Health Professionals: Psychologists, Social Workers, Therapists, Counselors, etc
This is the largest group, and you will likely come across them when searching specialized ADHD treatment providers. Psychologists can diagnose mental and behavioral disorders, and also provide counseling and therapy services. However, they do not prescribe medications. Master's level clinical social workers and licensed professional counselors provide therapy and social skills training, and counsel and train family members in order to strengthen the entire family system. Like psychologists, therapists and counselors can diagnose and treat ADHD, but do not prescribe ADHD medications.