Once your child has been diagnosed with ADHD you may be wondering, “What now?”
While your child might seem flighty at times or maybe forgetful, children with true ADHD have severe attention issues that negatively impact everything from school performance to social interactions. Most diagnoses occur before the age of 12. Our West Bloomfield, MI, pediatricians are usually the first doctors to turn to if you suspect that your child has ADHD. While ADHD can’t be cured, there are ways for our pediatric team to help your child manage their symptoms. Here are the ways that childhood ADHD is treated,
Age Impacts Treatment
If your child is under six years old, then their ADHD will be managed will be a bit differently than in children that are over six years of age. In children under six years old, we will most likely hold off on providing medications to manage their symptoms and instead turn to behavioral therapy. It’s important that parents also go through specialized behavioral management so that they understand what changes need to be made to their child’s current behaviors to improve school and home life. Children over six years old will often use a combination of behavioral therapy and medication.
Medication is Most Effective When Combined with Other Treatment Options
Every child is different. Some children will show a significant improvement in their behavioral symptoms when taking medication while other children may not show as much improvement in their ADHD symptoms. This is why it’s important to work with your West Bloomfield, MI, children’s doctor to tweak medications and treatment options based on the results you are currently seeing. We see the most improvements in children that combine ADHD medication with therapies and other strategies.
Lifestyle Changes Can Improve Symptoms
Along with behavioral therapy, developing coping skills and strategies, and taking medication, there are simple lifestyle changes that can also help your child better cope with their symptoms. These lifestyle changes include,
- Creating good sleep habits and making sleep a priority. Children should get anywhere from 8-11 hours depending on their age.
- Creating a healthy diet that is rich in omega 3s, iron, magnesium, and zinc. Make sure that they are getting complex carbs, protein, and lots of veggies in their diet while avoiding sugar.
- Making sure that your child is getting regular physical activity for at least one hour every day. Exercise is important as it boosts serotonin and dopamine in the brain and can help with mental clarity.
If you are concerned that your child is showing symptoms of ADHD here in West Bloomfield, MI, our pediatricians can provide you with both a diagnosis and treatment plan.
To schedule an evaluation or to discuss treatment options with us, call Orchard Pediatrics, PC at (248) 855-7510.