Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) - Other Treatment
Overall, medicines are the most
effective treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). But for mild symptoms, behavioral training, social skills training, training and education for parents, and
counseling may be the main treatment. In people with severe symptoms, these methods are used along with medicine.
therapy helps train parents, teachers, and other adults responsible for a
child who has ADHD. These programs focus on establishing routines and rules
for behavior and closely watching how a child responds.
For adults with ADHD, the standard treatment is medication. But experts say
that ADHD therapy -- and other psychosocial treatments -- can play a key role
“I think for many adults with ADHD, therapy is essential,” says David W.
Goodman MD, assistant professor of psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins University
School of Medicine.
While ADHD medicines are effective, they may not be enough. To use a phrase
popular among ADHD specialists, pills don’t build skills. Even with medication,
consistently delivers rewards or consequences depending upon how the child
complies with the rules. This type of treatment has been shown to be more
Cognitive-based therapies depend more upon the child to self-direct changes in behavior. A child with ADHD isn't likely to have the
skills to change his or her behavior without help and guidance from adults.
Behavioral programs most often used to help treat ADHD in a
Behavior management. Time-out and
reward systems can help a child who has ADHD learn appropriate behaviors for the
classroom and home. Parents learn behavior management skills during a series of 6 to 12 counseling sessions of 1 to 2 hours a
Social skills training. These techniques help the
child learn to be less aggressive and impulsive. Children learn to manage anger and behave in a
more socially acceptable way.
family therapy. All household members can benefit from
learning how to deal effectively with ADHD behavior.
If you are thinking about using these treatments for ADHD, be open with your doctor about the
subject. He or she can help direct you to treatments that are safe to use in
combination with proven techniques. Only those treatments that best help
control ADHD symptoms without causing physical or emotional harm should be