According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common childhood neurodevelopmental disorders. The disorder can cause difficulties focusing on tasks and following instructions, and may cause a child or adult to become easily distracted, hyperactive, impulsive or forgetful. These symptoms usually begin before the child reaches 12 years of age and can be mild, moderate or severe.
The exact cause of ADHD is not entirely understood; however, certain factors may play a role in the disorder’s manifestation including genetics, issues with the central nervous system during early development and even premature birth.
Children and adults with ADHD frequently experience difficulties thriving at school or work and maintaining interpersonal relationships. If you are concerned you or your child exhibit behaviors associated with ADHD, an ADHD assessment administered by Dr. Mara Tansman, an experienced licensed psychologist practicing in Los Angeles, can ensure an accurate diagnosis is made. To schedule an ADHD assessment with Dr. Tansman of Psychological Assessment Services, call (310) 734-0306 or contact us online today!
There are three types of ADHD:
The type you or your child may have is dependent on the severity of certain symptoms. These symptoms should be present for at least six months and the behavior be atypical compared to other children or adults of the same age, before seeking an ADHD diagnosis.
Associated with the most commonly recognized ADHD symptoms, children and adults with predominantly hyperactive-impulsive presentation seem to have boundless energy. They may have difficulty sitting still, resulting in fidgeting, excessive talking and interrupting, and movement and conversation at inappropriate times.
Often described as attention-deficit disorder (ADD), a child or adult with ADHD who is predominantly inattentive may have difficulty paying attention to fine details and, as a result, make careless mistakes in school or work. Regularly referred to as daydreamers, children and adults with predominantly inattentive presentation may appear not to listen, easily forget things and have poor organizational skills. Since their symptoms do not cause much distraction to others, they may have ADHD for extended periods before ever receiving a proper diagnosis.
As the most common form of ADHD in the United States, a combined presentation is characterized as a mix of both hyperactive-impulsive and inattentive behaviors.
Many children exhibit one or several of the behaviors mentioned above throughout adolescence but do not have ADHD. Other factors are often at play in these instances such as a lack of interest in a subject matter, the natural energy associated with youth, and children who are simply exhibiting immature behavior typical for their age.
For adults with undiagnosed ADHD, symptoms of the disorder generally begin in childhood but are never addressed. They often performed poorly while in school due to their difficulty concentrating and prioritizing their time. These traits carry over into adulthood, impacting job performance and social interactions. As a result, restlessness, risk taking and poor listening and communication skills may occur.
ADHD is among the most frequently misdiagnosed behavioral disorders in children. Other behavioral issues, learning disabilities, and medical conditions share similar symptoms, and these conditions may coincide with ADHD, or occur independently from the disorder. An ADHD diagnosis should only be sought after potential medical and neurological conditions are ruled out.
There is no single test which can diagnose ADHD. Rather, a comprehensive approach must be taken which evaluates the reported symptoms and observes the person’s behavior. Both educators and parents play critical roles in the diagnostic process, as they are able to report their observations of the child in different environments.
An ADHD assessment administered by Dr. Tansman will involve a thorough interview process of the patient, family members and teachers (if applicable). Dr. Tansman will also use her personal observations along with ADHD inventories to gather information upon which to base a possible ADHD diagnosis. Dr. Tansman draws on her 15+ years as a licensed psychologist and her extensive training in psychoeducational and psychodiagnostic testing and assessment to evaluate you or your child.
A Continuous Performance Test (CPT), a computerized test that measures a person’s ability to concentrate and control impulsivity, may also be utilized by Dr. Tansman as part of a complete assessment.
The prospect of an ADHD diagnosis can be frightening for both children and adults. However, it is important not to delay receiving an assessment if you suspect you or your child suffer from the disorder. With proper intervention, such as behavioral therapy or medication, a person with ADHD can learn to flourish at school or work.
To schedule an ADHD assessment with Dr. Tansman of Psychological Assessment Services at her Los Angeles, Rolling Hills, Pasadena or Irvine office, call (310) 734-0306 or contact us online today!
You can also visit our offices:
10323 Santa Monica Blvd., Suite 111
Los Angeles, CA 90025
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Rolling Hills, CA 90274
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Pasadena, CA 91101
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Irvine, CA 92612