TREATMENT FOR ADD & ADHD IN TEENS
Regardless of age, ADHD can have a significant impact on one’s daily functioning and overall wellbeing. How, and to what degree, a person is affected depends on the subtype.
TYPES OF ADHD
There are three major subtypes of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder:
- Predominantly Hyperactive/Impulsive type: the symptoms of this subtype primarily manifest with hyperactivity and/or impulsive symptoms. There are very few or no inattentive symptoms. This subtype is considered the most rare.
- Predominantly Inattentive type: this subtype presents with inattentive symptoms. Here there are few or no hyperactive symptoms.
- Combination ADHD: this subtype involves symptoms of both inattention and hyperactivity.
CAUSES OF ADHD
The cause(s) of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder are not fully understood. This applies to all three types of ADHD. Unfortunately, there has not yet been a test identified to screen for, or assess the risk of developing ADHD. That being said, research does indicate a neurobiological basis for ADHD. Scientists believe a combination of genes and environment can contribute to one’s possibility of developing attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.
SYMPTOMS OF ADHD
- difficulty sustaining attention and concentration
- easily distracted
- being impulsive
- have difficulty paying attention to a task for more than a few minutes
- appear to have trouble listening when spoken to
- lose things often
- be easily distracted
- be forgetful
HYPERACTIVE IMPULSIVE ADHD
A teen with symptoms of hyperactivity may:
- fidget often
- have trouble staying seated
- struggle with occupying themselves quietly
- talk a lot
Treatment for ADHD
- Behavior therapy – this is often for both the parents and the child with ADHD. This type of therapy can increase your child’s behavioral health over time.
- Medication – if behavior therapy alone is not effective in managing your child’s symptoms, medication may be suggested. Depending on the type of ADHD, either stimulant or non-stimulant medication may be prescribed.
CO-OCCURRING DISORDERS IN TEENS
- Oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) – oppositional defiant disorder affects teens by making it difficult to follow rules and having an increased tendency to lose temper and argue with others.
- Conduct disorder (CD) – conduct disorder is a much more severe version of ODD. While difficulty following the rules is a part of CD, individuals who struggle with it often engage in illegal and/or dangerous behaviors (i.e. – fighting, stealing, trespassing).
- Mood disorders – although teens with ADHD can also struggle with a wide range of mood disorders, major depressive disorder is the most common. This means not only dealing with the difficult ADHD symptoms, but also experiencing sadness, irritability, loss of interest in activities, etc.
- Anxiety disorders – research indicates up to 40% of individuals with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder may also have an anxiety disorder. There are a range of anxiety disorders, yet in general, they all involve excessive worry, difficulty stopping worrying, and associated uncomfortable physical symptoms.
- Substance and/or alcohol dependence – as a parent of a teenager, you have likely already wondered if your teen uses substances or alcohol. Yet if your teen has been diagnosed with ADHD, this may be more of a concern, as the risk for substance/alcohol use ranges anywhere from 10-25%.
YOUR TEEN’S LIFE WITH ADHD
Clearly, ADHD can be a tough diagnosis to navigate for both you and your teenage child. To find out more about support and residential treatment center options, contact the treatment team at Polaris at 1-844-836-0222.