The Child and Teen ADHDology 6 Step Treatment Approach

From the book Treating ADHD/ADD in Children and Adolescents: Solutions for Parents and Clinicians by Dr. Gene Carroccia published by Charles C Thomas Publishing, LTD.
The most comprehensive and effective treatment for ADHD involves a long-term management perspective that utilizes a number of approaches and interventions.

STEP 1. Evaluate ADHD and Other Co-Existing Conditions

a. Obtain a comprehensive ADHD evaluation or full neurodevelopmental assessment
b. Explore other possible coexisting medical, sleep, psychological, and
neurodevelopmental conditions and disorders
c. If other conditions are suspected or detected, obtain additional evaluations and
treatment from appropriate providers


STEP 2. Obtain Education About ADHD

a. Receive accurate information about ADHD
b. Learn about grieving issues concerning ADHD to move towards acceptance


STEP 3. Address and Manage ADHD at Home

a. Learn and use effective behavior management perspectives and methods, and
maximize parental effectiveness at home

  • Spouse/romantic relationships
  • Improve parenting effectiveness and parent-child relationships

b. Utilize additional services and management approaches to address various
ADHD challenges

c. Address sleep problems

  • Increase amount of sleep and address sleep difficulties
  • Utilize ADHD dietary approaches, including healthier foods, higher protein and lower simple carbohydrates and sugar diet, and omega-3 fish oil supplements
  • Do aerobic exercise
  • Use a specific stress management plan to address recurring frustrations


STEP 4. Address and Manage ADHD School Issues

a. Address homework and school behavioral problems through the use of the
notebook systems
b. Obtain 504 Plans or Individual Education Plans (IEP) at school
c. Utilize additional ways to address and manage school issues


STEP 5. Consider Medication Treatment for ADHD


STEP 6. Utilize Additional and Alternative ADHD Approaches and Treatment

a. Utilize additional approaches: ADHD dietary approaches (eating healthier & better-
quality foods; eating a higher protein, lower simple carbohydrates and low sugar
diet; eliminating foods and drinks with artificial colors, additives, sweeteners and
preservatives; and eliminating foods to which children and teens may be sensitive or
allergic), fish oil supplements, increasing sleep, increasing physical activity,
green time, limiting screen time and video games, and mind-body therapies
(mindfulness, yoga, tai chi)
b. Utilize alternative treatments: neurofeedback, correcting mineral and vitamin defi-
ciencies (zinc, magnesium, iron, B & D vitamins), Walsh’s Biochemical Imbalances
Approach and Advanced Nutrient Therapy, Brain Gym® and Bal-A- Vis-X