Common Medications and Treatments for ADHD

Typically, ADHD is treated through a combination of medication and counseling. Counseling can be beneficial for the individual, as well as for family and support members. The goal of treatment should be behavior modification and coping strategies that can help an individual live successfully with ADHD.

 

Drug Category How it works
 Chemotherapy  Helps to boost and balance levels of brain chemicals called neurotransmitters and the most severe symptoms of ADHD for a short period; dosage varies depending upon the severity of the symptoms
 Stimulant drugs (psychostimulants)  Most commonly given when stimulant drugs are not working; also helps to reduce anxiety
 Nonstimulant medication  Mainly used when mood swings accompany ADHD and stimulant/nonstimulants are not working
 Antidepressants   Prescribed to reduce tics and insomnia caused by other ADHD medications; also helps to reduce aggression associated with ADHD
 High blood pressure medications  Help to boost and balance levels of brain chemicals called neurotransmitters and the most severe symptoms of ADHD for a short period; dosage varies depending upon the severity of the symptoms

 

ADHD Counseling and Therapy

Behavior therapy – teachers and parents can learn behavior-changing strategies for dealing with difficult situations. These strategies may include token reward systems and timeouts.

Parenting skill training – can help parents develop ways to understand and guide their child’s behavior

Family therapy – can help parents and siblings deal with the stress of living with someone who has ADHD

Psychotherapy – allows older children with ADHD to talk about issues that bother them, explore negative behavioral patterns, and learn ways to deal with their symptoms.

Social skills training – can help children learn appropriate social behaviors

Support groups – support groups give ADHD children and their parents a network of social support, information, and education