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If your child is demonstrating any of the following symptoms, an attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) evaluation may be appropriate.

The symptoms your child displays can vary widely and may include:

  • Difficulty sustaining attention with tasks or play activities
    • Often shifts from one play activity to another
  • Difficulty completing tasks
    • Doesn't follow through on instructions given from others
    • Often loses things necessary to complete a task or activity at home or school
    • May have difficulty organizing goal-directed activities
  • Difficulty with self control
    • Often fidgets or has difficulty remaining seated when required
    • Has difficulty awaiting turn
    • Often blurts out answers to questions
    • Often interrupts others
  • Other behavioral issues
    • Frequently loses his/her temper
    • Argues with adults
    • Actively defies adult requests or rules
    • Annoys other people
    • Blames others for his/her own mistakes
    • Expresses negative feelings about him/herself

How is ADHD diagnosed?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorders are believed to be the result of deficits in neurological functioning. This causes delays in the development of self-regulation skills.

Current research suggests that the disorder is often inherited. However, there presently is no specific testsuch as a CT scan, EEG, MRI, X-ray or blood test to identify these neurological deficits. The presence of ADHD has to be inferred from observable behavior and performance. Diagnosis is further complicated because nearly all children and adolescents display the above behaviors at one time or another.

A comprehensive evaluation is conducted to determine if behaviors constitute an attention disorder or are related to another emotional or behavioral problem.

What does ADHD testing include?

  • Clinical interviews (with you and your child/adolescent)
  • Consultation with professionals (teachers, other professionals working with your child/adolescent)
  • Direct measures of attention skills (i.e., initiating, shifting and maintaining attention)
  • Brief measures of cognitive and academic skills (difficulties in these areas can contribute to attention problems)

What can ADHD testing tell me about my child?

Testing clarifies whether or not an attention disorder diagnosis accounts for your child's behavioral difficulties. We also will provide recommendations to assist in educational and treatment planning that can help in your child's successful functioning at home, in school, and with friends.

Additional information on ADHD evaluations

Review this information packet for attention deficit hyperactivity disorders evaluation services at Inova Kellar Center.