Some people are under the misconception that ADHD is a children’s disorder. Yet, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common disorder found in both children and adults. What causes it and how is it treated are common questions.

ADHD statistics show that the total number of people in the United States with ADHD was around 11 percent as of 2011. The number of children with ADHD has increased by 43 percent since 2003, according to the CDC.

If you have questions about ADHD for you or a family member, there is help. Here is a comprehensive guide to ADHD and treatment options.

What Is ADHD?

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder is a mental disorder common in children and teens. It also may continue into adulthood for some. It isn’t known exactly what causes ADHD but there are factors that may contribute. These include genetics, environment, and development.

According to the Mayo Clinic, there are risk factors that include:

  • Blood relatives, such as a parent or sibling, with ADHD or another mental health disorder
  • Exposure to environmental toxins — such as lead, found mainly in paint and pipes in older buildings
  • Maternal drug use, alcohol use, or smoking during pregnancy
  • Premature birth

Symptoms of ADHD

The symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder differ in children and adults.

In children, some of the signs and symptoms include:

  • Susceptible to distractions
  • Tends to daydream
  • Does not finish tasks or follow directions
  • Loses things
  • Makes mistakes often
  • Doesn’t follow instructions
  • Does not like to sit still
  • Forgets daily activities
  • Has organizational problems
  • Talks a lot
  • Cannot play quietly
  • Is always moving
  • Demonstrates impulsive behavior such as interrupting others

Symptoms in adults may include the following:

  • Anxiety
  • Relationship problems
  • Impulsiveness
  • Depression
  • Mood swings
  • Work problems
  • Organizational issues
  • Chronic boredom
  • Low self-esteem
  • Procrastination
  • Substance abuse
  • Concentration problems
  • Problems controlling anger
  • Many frustrations

As you can see, ADHD is not only an issue affecting children. In fact, adults suffer from attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, too. It is treatable but many do not realize there is valid help available.

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Treatment for ADHD

While ADHD is not curable, there are treatments that help.

As stated on PSYCOM:

Treatment for ADHD for people of all ages should be comprehensive. For kids, this often requires combining pharmacological treatments and occupational therapy, DeSilva says. Adults may benefit from a combination of medication and behavioral therapy and/or assistance with organization or structure. Both kids and adults may also sometimes try alternative treatments, as well, to help manage symptoms.

Treatment for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder falls into two types. This includes the umbrella of medication and non-medication treatment.

Medication for ADHD

There are medications used for treating attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. These are most often in the form of stimulants. The reason stimulants work well is that they target dopamine. This is what helps control things like emotional responses, movement, and motivation.

It’s true that many people with ADHD seem to have ample stimulation. Yet, stimulants often negate the need to seek outside stimulation.

Stimulant Therapy Options

Some of the more common stimulant drugs include:

Methylphenidate. This one is made by many brands. These include Concerta, Methylin, and Daytrana. Is also sells under brands like Ritalin, Quillivant XR, Aptensio XR, and Metadate CD.

Amphetamine/Dextroamphetamine. The brands that market these include Adderall and Adderall XR.

Dexmethylphendiate. This includes Focalin.

Dextroamphetamine. The brands are Dexedrine, ProCentra, and Zenzedi.

While these forms of medication are helpful, they only have a short-term effect. Patients often need medication again after three to six hours.

Longer-lasting medications provide more time in between having to take them. These include:

Amphetamine Sulfate. Known as Evekeo.
Lasting 8-12 hours, this an intermediate option.

There are also longer lasting options for 12 to 16 hours that include the following:

Dexmethylphenidate. Sold under the brand Focalin XR.

Dextroamphetamine. This one is Adderall XR.

Lisdexamfetamine. Goes by the brand name Vyvanse.

Other medicinal treatments are non-stimulants. These include atomoxetine, antidepressants, α-Adrenergic agonists, Modafinil, nicotine agonists, and more.

Non-Medicinal ADHD Therapy Options

There are forms of non-medicinal therapy options that work for many. Some work in tandem with medication, although it depends on the individual’s needs.

Here are some of the non-medicinal options:

Holistic Options

Holistic treatment takes a natural approach. This involves a combination of natural treatment and supplements. These work in tandem and benefit the patient without depending on medication alone.

For instance, physical therapy combined with natural supplements. This works to provide the person suffering from ADHD with a mind/body type of treatment.

Other holistic approaches include things like music therapy or adventure therapy. Both of these fall under an experiential approach of treatment. Yet, it is still a natural approach to treating attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Occupational Therapy

This type of therapy encourages rehab through the performance of daily activities.

According to the Psychiatric Times, it is imperative to foster the development of coping skills. Structuring the patient’s environment is conducive to psychosocial treatment. To improve coping skills, cognitive behavioral therapy negates years of impairment. These coping skills include minimizing impulsivity, disorganization, and distractibility.

Nutritional Supplements

As mentioned, nutritional supplements go hand in hand with a mind/body approach. This includes a daily supply of several vitamins, minerals, oils, and amino acids formulated for individuals.

Treating ADHD

Finding the right treatment is crucial to treating ADHD effectively. While attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder is not curable, it is definitely treatable. Find the help you or your child deserves with treatment options. Whether it’s a medicinal or holistic approach, treatment is possible. Transformations Treatment Center helps; reach out to us for more information.