More than 9% of children and nearly 5% of adults have been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. ADHD causes a variety of symptoms that range from not being able to sit still when needed to forgetting appointments and other important obligations because they are “out of sight, out of mind.” Living with ADHD can cause serious disruption to your life if you leave it untreated. Luckily, there is a wide variety of treatment options available.
There are two types of stimulant medications available to treat ADHD symptoms in 13 year olds and in people of all ages. Immediate-release medications are short-acting and need to be taken about every four hours during the day. They are the most affordable stimulant medications.
The other type of stimulant is an extended-release medication. They are intermediate- and long-acting and usually only need to be taken once in the morning. These tablets should not be chewed or crushed, unless they are made of beads. Beaded types can be sprinkled onto food if a child has trouble swallowing tablets or capsules.
Sometimes, people do not want to take stimulants for personal reasons. There are also non-stimulant medications that may be used on their own or in conjunction with stimulants to ensure the best treatment for the individual patient’s needs. The biggest difference between stimulant vs non-stimulant ADHD meds is the amount of time it takes to work. Stimulants work within a few minutes, but non-stimulants must build up in the system and may not provide results for 3-6 weeks.
Less Screen Time More Exercise
Chances are you or your kids spend quite a lot of time in front of televisions, computers, tablets, and phones. Too much screen time can be detrimental, though. Studies show that children benefit from shorter periods of screen time but in more frequent doses. This means that instead of spending four hours watching reruns on Nickelodeon every weekend, your child should spend about 40 minutes per day watching TV or using tablets, computers, or phones. However, it’s important to keep in mind that no two people are alike and this should be tweaked to fit your and your child’s needs. For example, kids who are visual learners may need to use screen time a bit more often, especially if it’s helping them complete school work.
Behavioral therapy is a common treatment component for kids and adults who have ADHD. Everyday tasks often seem overwhelming and impossible for people who have ADHD but behavioral therapy can help you develop new behaviors that you can use in combination with other treatments, such as over the counter ADHD medication for child.
So, how does it work? It helps you to create positive behaviors and replace negative behaviors with them. Typically, it includes creating a routine that you can stick to, such as showering every night before bed or having your child finish homework as soon as they get home from school. It may also include creating a reward and consequence system (yes, even for yourself) that helps you to stay motivated and on task.
Finding out that you or your child has ADHD can be overwhelming at first but it doesn’t mean that you need to face a lifetime of falling behind. By using medication, behavioral therapy, and other methods to treat symptoms, you are more likely to lead a happy and fulfilling life.