Testing for ADHD can be performed by various treatment providers. Often, a family’s general physician is the first to be informed of a child’s particular behavioral challenges.
Such children are typically exhibiting behavioral symptoms in school and at home.
Since primary physicians are generally not qualified to conduct comprehensive behavioral assessments, they refer the family to a specialist in the form of mental health professionals who are skilled at screening for ADHD.
While general physicians can prescribe psychiatric medications, this is never recommended until a proper mental health evaluation and ADHD testing by a licensed mental health professional in conducted.
ADHD testing is generally in the form of an easy questionnaire that inquires about specific behavioral and emotional challenges. It also asks questions that relate to general functioning in different environments such as home, school, work, etc.
For an example, take this free ADHD Self Test.
The Different Types Of ADHD Treatment Providers
If you test positive, make a an appointment for an assessment by specialized professionals who are qualified to diagnose and treat ADHD. An ADHD screening can be conducted by a variety of treatment providers: psychiatrists, licensed psychologists, neurologists, developmental or behavioral pediatrician, and licensed mental health therapists such as social workers and counselors.
Besides being ADHD treatment providers, these professionals are all qualified to perform testing for ADHD via ADHD scales and assessments.
During the first appointment, a clinical interview is conducted. This is simple information gathering; reason for the appointment, description of the problem, onset of symptoms, emotional and behavioral history, medical history, family history of mental illness or substance abuse, current and past functioning, and other information that may be useful.
In addition, behavioral questionnaires or inventories are often conducted by people in frequent contact with the patient or client such as parents, teachers, spouses, etc. The reason for this is that ADHD is diagnosed based on behavioral symptoms that must occur in at least two different environments, such as home and school.
This information provides treatment professionals a starting point; a baseline of behaviors across different environments that can now be targeted for intervention. The intervention typically includes some type of behavioral plan.
Recommended ADHD Treatment For Children
For children, the ADHD Breakthrough Program is the gold standard of ADHD treatment programs that teaches parents how to control and manage ADHD behaviors, improve grades, and achieve a peaceful home front. I have used this program with my own son who suffers from ADHD and scores of my clients who were equally successful.
Recommended ADHD Treatment For Adults
For adults, How To Conquer ADHD is an inspirational treatment guide written by an adult who learned how to overcome his ADHD and become more focused and better organized. All of which resulted in him becoming not only financially succesful, but improved his relationships, marriage, and family life.