Your ADHD Diagnosis Guide

A thorough evaluation of ADHD symptoms is complicated — as it should be to ensure accuracy and rule out similar diagnoses. Follow this step-by-step guide to finding an ADHD clinician, preparing for the consultation and testing, and learning to manage symptoms.

An ADHD test alone can't diagnose symptoms of attention deficit. Here's how to find an ADD professional and pursue an evaluation and diagnosis.

Warning Signs

You’re worried. Your son’s teacher sent home a note saying that his lack of focus is holding him back in class.

Your daughter phoned a classmate to set up a play date, and was turned down for the third time. The so-called “friend” told your daughter that she’s weird.

Or perhaps you are concerned about your job. You were late to work twice last week, and you frequently miss deadlines and meetings. You won’t be getting the promotion you’ve been after–in fact, you may be fired.

You’ve wondered for months what’s causing you or your child to come up short– stress, learning disabilities, a medical condition, or ADHD? You’re tired of wondering. It’s time to find out. You want to get an evaluation, take an ADHD test.

Congratulations. You are taking an important step in changing your life. But you are plagued by questions: Where do you start? What kind of doctor diagnoses ADHD? How do you know if you’re getting a state-of-the-art evaluation and an accurate diagnosis? And what should you do after you get it?

Next: Where to Go for an ADHD Diagnosis
How Experts Make an ADHD Diagnosis
ADHD Diagnosis Step 1: The Consultation
ADHD Diagnosis Step 2: Testing, Testing
ADHD Diagnosis Step 3: Learning How to Manage Symptoms
Five Common Diagnosis Mistakes

This article comes from the Fall 2009 issue of ADDitude.

To read this issue of ADDitude in full, buy the back issue.

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TAGS: Diagnosing Children with ADHD, Adult ADD: Late Diagnosis, Choosing an ADHD Professional

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