Ask the Experts

Best Medication for Inattentive ADHD

“My daughter was recently diagnosed with inattentive ADHD. She was put on an extended-release stimulant medication, and her attention span is better. But her language specialist told me that medication is less effective on children who are inattentive. Is this true?”

The literature and formal diagnostic manuals identify three types of ADHD: Primarily Inattentive Type, Primarily Hyperactive/Impulsive Type, and Combined Type (hyperactive, inattentive, and impulsive). The treatment is the same whether the child has one, two, or all three of the behaviors. This treatment is medication, usually a stimulant. As her parent, you are in the best position to judge what’s best for her. If you have observed that she is less easily distracted when she’s taken her medication, it sounds as if she should stay on it.

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