Treatment for ADHD in Children
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders. Signs of ADHD in kids often demonstrate concern with their ability to focus on work and complete projects in a timely fashion. The children often exhibit concerns with regard to their social functioning because of the impact that their inattention and impulsivity has on social successes.
Children with ADHD may also exhibit challenges with their academic achievement and may struggle to pick up information in the classroom setting. An evaluation is recommended when ADHD is speculated in order to help determine current levels of functioning as well as what accommodations and interventions would be most effective for the child.
Our neuropsychologists specialize in diagnosing ADHD and providing academic accommodations such as additional time to complete school exams and even college entrance exams.
More About ADHD
According to the DSM-IV (2000), Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, or ADHD, is characterized by a continual pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity. Symptoms occur frequently and are more severe than those typically observed in an individual at a similar developmental level. According to the DSM-IV, ADHD is prevalent in 3% – 7% of school-age children. To receive a diagnosis for this condition, symptoms must be present before the age of seven and must have occurred in at least two different settings. Furthermore, symptoms must significantly impair the individual’s social, academic, or occupational functioning.
Hear one of our clients talk about the evaluation process for ADHD from a mom’s perspective…
What are symptoms of ADHD?
Symptoms of inattention include:
- failing to pay attention to details
- making careless mistakes in schoolwork, work, or other activities
- having difficulty in maintaining attention during tasks or activities
- appearing as though not listening when someone is speaking to him or her
- inconsistently complying with instructions
- having difficulty with organization
- having difficulty with tasks or activities that require a heightened mental effort
- losing items
- becoming easily distracted by stimuli in the environment
- forgetfulness (DSM-IV, 2000)
Symptoms of hyperactivity include:
- fidgeting with hands or feet
- squirming while sitting
- leaving a seat when the expectation is to be seated
- excessively running about or climbing in situations where it is deemed inappropriate
- difficulty in quietly engaging in leisurely activities
- described as “on the go”
- talking excessively.
Some examples of symptoms of impulsivity include:
- giving answers before questions have been completed
- having difficulty awaiting one’s turn
- interrupting others.
How might I know if my child is in the early stages of developing ADHD?
Since the onset of ADHD symptoms begin before the age of 7, parents, teachers, and other caregivers may observe excessive motor activity when their child is a toddler. It is important to distinguish this motor hyperactivity from the activity of a typical toddler. Typically, a diagnosis of ADHD is made during the elementary years, because symptoms may become accentuated when the demands of school are heightened. As the child enters adolescence, the condition usually remains stable. For most individuals, symptoms (especially motor hyperactivity) become less pronounced during late adolescence and adulthood (DSM-IV, 2000).
What can I do to help my child with ADHD?
Behavioral interventions and/or pharmacological interventions are typically forms of treatment for children with ADHD. Behavioral programs can be developed and individualized according to the individual’s current level of functioning. Goals are then established in order to maximize the individual’s relationship development, performance at school, or work, and home. Goals also include decreasing disruptive behaviors and increasing self-esteem and independence. Stimulant or non-stimulant medication may also be used to facilitate treatment of the symptoms.
Our approach to ADHD at North Shore Pediatric Therapy
We offer a multi-disciplinary approach that starts with neuropsychological testing to help diagnose ADHD and advocate for proper school support. Additionally, our applied behavior analysis team develops individualized interventions to help your child reach his or her full potential in all settings (e.g., home, school, extra-curricular activities). Behavior analysts are available to work in multiple environments so that the child is fully supported. Our occupational therapists also will help the child develop by addressing his/her self-regulation, providing sensory strategies to better cope with changes in his/her environment.
Client Reviews (20)
My son has been receiving ABA at NSPT4Kids for a year and a half. The staff is extremely knowledgeable, caring, and understanding. They have been great working with our insurance company. My son has completely opened up. He now seeks his older sister to play – something he never did for the first four and a half years of his life. He looks at me when he talks to me. We have conversations. It is amazing. I never would have thought ABA could do this. I am so thankful for NSPT4Kids!
I completed my first FWII placement at NSPT in Bucktown. I had such a fantastic learning experience that truly helped me to grow my skills and experience. The staff at Bucktown was extremely welcoming and happy to teach, answer questions and allow me to observe outside my discipline to make this an even more well-rounded experience. The orientation/mentor program is great for students and makes heading into FW a much easier transition that sets you up for success. I had a great working relationship with my clinical instructor who helped me develop my treatment planning, documentation and intervention skills as well as teaching me a great deal about being a practicing OT in general! Overall, I couldn’t ask for anything more from a FWII experience!
My husband and I were so impressed with our experience at your clinic. From my first phone call to NSPT, to the parent meetings with Dr. Stasi, to my son’s evaluation day and the follow-up feedback meeting, we felt supported and “heard” by everyone. We had anxieties about having our 4 year old evaluated – it was such uncharted territory for us – but we couldn’t be happier with the experience and with the results. We now feel like we have a more comprehensive understanding of our son’s strengths and weaknesses. We feel like we know better as parents how to help him reach his full potential. We also are happy that we can pass along Dr. Stasi’s narrative to our son’s teachers and therapists so that they can have a better understanding of his specific needs. Everyone at NSPT held our hands throughout the process, kept us in the loop, and returned calls/emails in a timely manner. Thank you for a great experience!
I completed my Level IIA Fieldwork at North Shore Pediatric Therapy in Bucktown. I am so impressed by the organization of the student program and its emphasis on the reflection process. This reflection process has helped me develop clinical reasoning skills that are significant to treating clients. I also felt surrounded by a professional body of therapists that took on a mentor role, especially my supervisor. The gradual increase in case load was challenging yet manageable, providing me with client-centered intervention experience that will apply to my future endeavors as a therapist. Thank you, North Shore.
Our son Ian has been having sensory issues for a while & we were very pleased with the work that Ms. Dawn had been doing with him to help him deal with his processing issues. We were sad to leave NSPT due to a move out-of-state.
I completed my level II OT fieldwork at NSPT and it was a really positive experience. There is a multidisciplinary staff that are all eager to welcome and assist in the learning process. It is a really great location to learn about diverse applications of pediatric OT. All of the staff are passionate about what they do and have creative and exciting ideas to motivate children as they work on a wide variety of skills. NSPT is a wonderful placement for developing skills for pediatric OT and I am grateful to have had this experience!
Our son Ian received two evaluations by Dr. Greg Stasi & we were very impressed with the thoroughness of the evaluations & the time Dr. Stasi took to explain the results. It was extremely beneficial in determining what treatment Ian would receive both at NSPT & in school.
Our son has been in the ABA program at North Shore for almost two years now. The gains his therapists have made with him have been without a shadow of a doubt wonderful and remarkable. Everything they do in session, we always reinforce at home to help him continue his gains. The ABA therapists are always quick to update the kids individual program to continue to challenge the kids, even if they are having a rough time that session. We are grateful of what North Shore has done for our son both past, present and moving into the future. As we get ready to send our son into Kindergarten, the North Shore ABA team gets a lot of credit helping to make this milestone happen for him. I highly recommend North Shore for all of their services.
We are incredibly fortunate to have Mrs. Ellyn’s influence. Even though we have only been here for 6 months, I am seeing a more able, more confident child. Mrs. Ellyn not only has helped gross and fine motor control, coordination and motor planning, but has helped set boundaries and attainable goals for my child. It is great to see him grow so strong.
I completed my final level II OT fieldwork at NSPT and had one of the best clinical experiences I could have expected. The entire staffs’ level of investment in their work motivated me to be creative while also working hard to deliver evidence-based research interventions. The successful stories I often heard from parents regarding their child’s growth reflects the passion and love each clinician at NSPT has for their job. I am so sad to have to say goodbye to the staff and the kids I’ve been working with for the past three months, and can’t express how grateful I am to have been placed here!
My 5-year-old son has been receiving OT therapy at NSPT for 2 1/2 years. Could not be happier with his progress. Thank You NSPT!
My son (now 4) has been receiving OT at North Shore Pediatric Therapy in Glenview for almost a year. He receives a wide array of OT services including feeding therapy, core strengthening, fine-motor work, and balance activities. It is very encouraging to see the progress he has made and how much he enjoys his sessions. The OT truly listens to our concerns and provides us with plenty of resources and activities that we can work on at home to keep his progress going.
North Shore Pediatric Therapy (NSPT) has changed our lives for the better! My six year old son was diagnosed with Sensory Processing Disorder when he was 3. Getting through a day was a difficult journey for the entire family until we began to get Occupational Therapy services (OT) for him. We see Ellyn, an OT at the Highland Park office, and she acts not only as an advocate for my son helping him strengthen his areas of weakness, but also as a great support system for me (mom). The entire NSPT team has been fantastic. I highly recommend them!
Our daughter is currently 3.5 years old. Since birth, we knew something wasn’t quite right. Her colic lasted nearly a year and when the colic broke, whining/crying/severe tantrums began. She was evaluated at 3 and 24 months by an OT for potential sensory processing issues and both came back inconclusive. We had her seen by a behavioral specialist as well as a developmental pediatrician. No one was able to help our struggled daughter or us. Until Dec 2013 when we came to North Shore Pediatric Therapy in Highland Park….we met Ellyn Kearney. She understood our daughter before she even met her. Ellyn has changed our lives and how we live day to day. Our daughter suffered from severe sensory processing issues despite being a healthy beautiful child. The progress noted from my child is remarkable. Thank you NSPT and Thank you Ellyn.
My 6 year-old son was diagnosed with High Functioning Autism/PPD-NOS around age 3 1/2 years old. After searching and looking for Occupational Therapy services we started coming to North Shore Pediatric Therapy in April 2013. We began seeing Shannon Phelan here at North Shore Pediatric Therapy in Bucktown for his OT services. We have seen a tremendous amount of growth in his OT Fine & Gross Motor skills: holding a pen/pencil, writing his letters and numbers and working on his Sensory Processing Integration. We are extremely pleased with our Occupational Therapist, Shannon and the entire North Shore Pediatric Staff. I would highly recommend coming here if you need Occupational Therapy services for your child.
I completed my Level II Fieldwork at NSPT in Bucktown in 2011. From the moment I walked in on the first day it was clear that NSPT created a supportive environment that would further my development as a professional and as an occupational therapist. The sense of community created a comfortable environment to collaborate with other disciplines. Not only was my clinical instructor invested in my learning, but so was the whole staff. Through this experience at NSPT, I found my passion for working within pediatrics. I increased my clinical knowledge, clinical reasoning and confidence during this time. I would highly recommend this site for occupational therapy students looking for a well-rounded and challenging experience.
I completed my second Level 2 fieldwork experience at North Shore Pediatric Therapy and could not have enjoyed my time more. I learned invaluable lessons about the world of pediatric occupational therapy all in a warm and welcoming environment created by staff members of all disciplines. I would highly recommend this fieldwork experience to anyone interested in working with children.
I was able to complete my Level 2 occupational therapy fieldwork at NSPT. It was a great experience! I was challenged educationally and clinically, and as a result came out of the experience with a greater knowledge about sensory integration, fine and gross motor skills, and how to evaluate and treat a wide variety of children in an outpatient setting. My supervisor and all of the staff made me feel welcome and a part of the team!
I completed my second Level 2 fieldwork at North Shore Pediatric Therapy in Glenview and Bucktwon in the Spring of 2012. I enjoyed my experience so much that I am now an employee at NSPT! Overall, I had a very positive yet challenging learning experience that supported growth in my clinical and professional skills. Not only did I grow my OT skills and knowledge but I was able to learn about and collaboate with many different disciplines including social work, physcial therapy, speech language pathology, neuropsychology, etc. NSPT is able to provide students a unique experience to learn how to treat the whole child to help them function at their fullest potential!
I had the opportunity to complete my Level 1C fieldwork experience at North Shore Pediatric Therapy Bucktown. I was incredibly impressed by the knowledge and professionalism of all the staff and their work with the clients and their parents. It was a wonderful learning experience for me and I highly recommend this site for any level 1 or 2 OT student interested in pediatrics. I wish I could have stayed longer.