adhd assessment process
It is important to know at the outset that the ADHD assessment process can take time. Our goal is not to quickly start stimulant medication but rather to discover whether you actually have ADHD. Once a diagnosis is made, we can move on to proper treatment planning.
An assessment can take two to four sessions: one to two for gathering general psychiatric history and ruling out other clear causes of trouble with attention, and another one to two for a thorough and comprehensive assessment of ADHD-specific symptoms throughout the life span.
If we discover that you do not have ADHD, we will work together to decide if there is anything else that you require treatment for.
If we find that you do have ADHD, the optimal treatment is multimodal. Medication is the most effective initial intervention and, for many, is the foundation that will allow other treatments to be effective. If you have ADHD, the right medication may make it possible to use your mind and experience your body in ways you never thought possible.
However, just having new capacities will not bring new skills. To learn those skills quickly, it can be helpful to have executive function skills training and therapy, either individual or group-based. Skills training is concrete and practical. It can help you learn how to approach many life tasks in an organized way. Therapy can open new doors of emotional experience and expression for those who grew up being told to "just try harder" and built a sense of self based on their inability to do so. Group therapy can have the added benefit of connecting with others who have experienced the world in a similar way and learning from each other what is working to address difficulties.
At this time, Bay Area Neuropsychiatry does not offer therapy and executive function skills training and will refer to outside clinicians for these portions of treatment.