Wednesday, 29 Jun 2016
Approaching ADHD with Psychiatry
By Private Therapy Clinic
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is an often misunderstood condition not least because its prevalence in society is a relatively new field of study. Much like other areas of mental health, the collective symptoms of ADHD have until the last few decades been unacknowledged as a condition.
Whilst many people associate the term with children and adolescents, ADHD is not something people ‘grow out of’ and those who were never diagnosed at an early age go on to experience the symptoms as adults. Without treatment, ADHD will stay with a person regardless of age although it may seem to evolve or change as the patient makes lifestyle choices that accommodate their condition believing them just to be indistinguishable aspects of their personality. Somebody with undiagnosed ADHD may find physical and active work more fitting as this doesn’t require extended period of sitting down and as such their condition may have limited career prospects.
The physical manifestation of ADHD can often be observed in everyday situations such as finding it difficult to sit still or being unable to concentrate for long periods but the root cause in ADHD is certainly a mental health rather than physical health issue.
Research and Treatment
As research into ADHD has given us a greater insight into the condition, and as such a wide range of treatments are now available, some utilising cognitive therapies and others taking advantage of medications, an option made available by a psychiatrist’s ability to prescribe medications.
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) can take a leading role in the treatment of ADHD as it contributes to an improvement in symptoms and can be used effectively alongside other therapies such as relaxation and stress management. CBT is a means by which a psychiatrist can interact with how a person thinks and can use this technique to really understand the situation the patient is in and make informed decisions about treatment plans.
With regards to ADHD, a number of medication options are available albeit not always required. Naturally, some people find it difficult to take medications routinely and others have been unsatisfied with progress with medication-only treatments. Where medication is a route that both the psychiatrist and the patient agrees on, a number of options are available such as Methylphenidate which is often know by its brand name Ritalin. Beyond this, psychiatrists may decide to use Dexamfetamine, Atomoxetine or Lisdexamfetamine, the decision being made after taking into account the exact circumstances, other medications etc
Improving the Lives of Those with ADHD
The end goal of psychiatric intervention is to improve the lives of patients. For children, this could mean allowing them to take advantage of the opportunities ahead of them in education and for adults it may widen their suitability in job markets and open up career opportunities that were previously never considered.
As with other mental health conditions, ADHD can make it more difficult for a person to interact with society and as such may leave them at a disadvantage. In the long run, this must be addressed by society at large but right now with the right treatment the world can become a lot more accessible.