Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
Drs. Ryan and Olivia Lee, psychiatric nurse practitioners in Scottsdale are adept in ADHD treatment using medication management and counseling services. Please contact us to discuss our treatment options and availability!
What is ADHD?
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, is a type of mental disorder that makes it extremely difficult for an individual to sustain attention and concentration. The cognitive and motor symptoms of ADHD can impact an individual’s performance at work, in school, and even make interpersonal relationships more of a challenge. There are three different sub-types of ADHD: inattentive type, hyperactive type, and combined type.
ADHD tends to be a disorder that is misunderstood and underestimated. A common misconception is that individuals with ADHD are less intelligent or lack motivation to excel. Quite often the opposite is true. Individuals with ADHD tend to be very intelligent and set high standards for themselves. Consequently, they often become very frustrated when their symptoms make it difficult to reach their goals. Depression and anxiety are frequent co-occuring disorders for individuals with ADHD, as it becomes more apparent to them that their symptoms are impacting their day-to-day functioning.
For example, an individual with ADHD may become highly anxious when an assignment is due for school. Because of the added stress and energy required to complete the assignment, they may become more irritable or develop difficulty sleeping. All of these things may make it difficult to maintain healthy relationships and thus, further decrease quality of life. As you can begin to see, ADHD is much more than just being a hyperactive “space-cadet”.
What about ADHD treatment?
Luckily, with proper treatment and behavioral modifications, individuals with ADHD can become healthy, high-functioning adults. ADHD treatment can include medication, which can be a very helpful tool in decreasing the severity of symptoms. There are two type main types of ADHD medications. These include stimulant and non-stimulant medications. Stimulant medications include drugs such as methylphenidate and amphetamine salts. Non-stimulant medications include drugs such as atomoxetine, guanfacine, and buproprion. There are pros and cons of both stimulant and non-stimulant medications. It is important to speak with your provider to discuss what may be most appropriate given your symptoms and your history.
ADHD treatment often includes developing coping skills through behavioral modification. These skills can be extremely helpful for an individual struggling with ADHD. Simple things, such as making a habit out of using a calendar or creating to-do lists can be helpful tools to stay organized and on track. Designating specific areas for items such as your car keys and wallet can save time and decrease stress. Although these may seem rather trivial, something as simple as forgetting your wallet or missing a meeting can easily snowball for an individual with ADHD and lead to worsening of symptoms.