Not everyone who is overly hyperactive, inattentive, or impulsive has an attention deficit disorder. Since most people sometimes blurt out things they didn't mean to say, bounce from one task to another, or become disorganized and forgetful.
To assess whether a person has ADHD, we consider several critical questions: Are they a continuous problem and not just a response to a temporary situation? Do the behaviours occur in several settings or only in one specific place like the playground or the office?
The person's pattern of behavior is compared against a set of criteria and characteristics of the disorder. These criteria appear in a manual called the DSM-5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders version 5). Other potential causes that need to be screened out include; learning difficulties, oppositional issues, mood problems and medical conditions.
The comprehensive ADHD is a process conducted over 2-3 sessions with an experienced psychologist. The psychologist will ask you questions and administer questionnaires about your background, educational history and aptitudes and noted changes in your cognitive ability (ie memory, focus, concentration, distractibility) to determine if you may have ADHD or other related problem. The ADHD screening and other assessments measures symptoms ADHD and are completed by yourself as well as other close family members who are able to assess your cognitive and behavioural history. Medical screening through your GP or medical clinic may also be required to provide further assessment data.
Following the completion of the ADHD assessment:
- 3 x 50-minute clinical consultations
- Administration of ADHA self-report and other screening tests (for yourself and next of kin), Mood and Personality Tests.
- Scoring of above measures and Interpretation Report