A number of different treatment modalities have emerged over the years for ADD and ADHD. The decision as to which treatment would be most effective depends upon clinical evaluation and the age of the patient. Unfortunately, there is no cure available and treatments are often aimed at controlling symptoms and restricting certain behaviours.
In this article, we shall take a brief look at the different ADHD treatment options that may be offered to adults and children.
There are primarily three different drugs that are offered to patients with ADHD. These are described by specialist physicians or psychiatrists who have extensively assess the needs of the patient. The currently offered medication include –
The doses of these drugs will be decided by the doctor. The aim of this medical drug therapy is to allow the patient to remain calm, control their impulsive behaviour, help them concentrate on regular tasks a lot better and promote the development of new skills. The above treatments are used in both adults and children. The drugs are controlled drugs and their use is constantly monitored when patients are taking them. Often, patients are commenced on a small dose and if required, the dosage is increased to achieve the desired response.
Drug therapy described above is stimulant therapy. They work by stimulating the central nervous system though their exact mechanism of action does not seem to be very clear. The first two drugs are not licensed for use in adults while the last drug is used as adult ADHD treatment. Caution should be observed in patients who are pregnant and those who suffer from heart disease and high blood pressure.
Altering the behaviour of the child using specific methods is a useful ADHD treatment for children and adults. Some recommend utilising a reward system where good behaviour is rewarded while bad behaviour is punished. Behavioural therapy can be adopted not only at home but also in a school environment. Adequate teaching needs to be offered to patients and teachers so that the treatment can be safe and effective.
In this form of treatment, patients with ADHD are encouraged to discuss their feelings and emotions that they experience as a part of this condition. It is believed that talking about it can help them identify with it a lot better and achieve better control at the same time.
Cognitive behavioural therapy
This is a particular form of therapy that requires special mention. Here, certain aspects of the person's life that may be contributing to ADHD will be discussed and measures will be put in place to control them. Treatment can take a fair bit of time but is believed to be fairly effective.
ADHD (and its subtype ADD) can be fairly distressing not only to the patient but also to their family members. Different treatment options are available that can, over time, effectively control impulsive behaviour and hyperactivity.