ADHD Consultation

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder ​is one of the most common neurodevelopment disorders affecting children, and may be associated with difficulty paying attention, poor impulse control, and high levels of activity. If you are concerned about your child's developmental progress, or would like to get them evaluated for ADHD, click below to book a consultation.

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About ADHD

What are the signs of ADHD?

The most common signs of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder – as suggested by the name – are trouble paying attention, and over-activity. Additional symptoms can be:

  • Poor impulse control

  • Trouble focusing on tasks

  • Being forgetful

  • Trouble sitting still 

  • Taking unnecessary risks

  • Frequent daydreaming

  • Difficulty getting along with others

Not All ADHD Is the Same

While you may have heard "ADD" and "ADHD" used interchangeably, ADD is an outdated term no longer in use by the medical community. Instead, ADHD diagnoses are grouped into three types to maximize consistency and specificity.

Predominantly Inattentive Type

This type of ADHD is the most common among girls, and often goes undiagnosed because it is the least disruptive of the three types. It is defined by extreme difficulty focusing, completing tasks, and following directions.

Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Type

This type of ADHD is marked by hyperactivity and impulsive behavior. This can include fidgeting, interrupting people during conversations, difficulty waiting for one's turn, and some can find it difficult to focus on tasks.

Combined Hyperactive-Impulsive and Inattentive Type

The most common form of ADHD, this type manifests in challenges with attention, as well as hyperactivity and impulsive behavior. 

Understanding a child's type of ADHD is important because it can often determine the best course of treatment and intervention. A child's type can also change over time, so periodic follow-ups are critical to making sure that treatment remains effective.

How Common Is It?

As of 2016, the CDC estimated that almost 1 in 10 had received a diagnosis with ADHD at some point, making it one of the most common developmental disorders in American children. The most commonly reported effect of ADHD is trouble at school, whether that manifests in academic challenges or problems relating to others. Boys are twice as likely to receive a diagnosis. In girls, hyperactivity is more likely to appear as being hyper-talkative.

ADHD can last into adulthood, and there are some adults who many have ADHD but have never been diagnosed. Because symptoms of ADHD can change over time and impact a person differently as the demands of life change, it's important for children to get evaluated for ADHD at a young age so that they can learn to manage symptoms in a healthy way.

Diagnosis & Treatment

Although doctors and researchers still aren't certain what causes ADHD, doctors typically diagnose children based on information from teachers and family about the child's behavior over recent months and years. 

Treatment for ADHD can include behavioral therapies, medication, or a combination of the two. The course of treatment depends in large part on the type of ADHD that a child has. The American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommends parent training on how to manage their child's behavior as one of the primary treatment methods. Additional behavior therapies for the child are also recommended before medication, most often. Still, medication can be an incredibly helpful tool for helping children manage their symptoms in everyday life.

 

The CDC provides the following suggestions for helping your child manage ADHD:

  • Create a routine.

    • Try to follow the same schedule every day, from wake-up time to bedtime.

  • Get organized.

    • Encourage your child to put schoolbags, clothing, and toys in the same place every day so that they will be less likely to lose them.

  • Manage distractions.

    • Turn off the TV, limit noise, and provide a clean workspace when your child is doing homework. Some children with ADHD learn well if they are moving or listening to background music. Watch your child and see what works.

  • Limit choices.

    • To help your child not feel overwhelmed or overstimulated, offer choices with only a few options. For example, have them choose between this outfit or that one, this meal or that one, or this toy or that one.

  • Be clear and specific when you talk with your child.

    • Let your child know you are listening by describing what you heard them say. Use clear, brief directions when they need to do something.

  • Help your child plan.

    • Break down complicated tasks into simpler, shorter steps. For long tasks, starting early and taking breaks may help limit stress.

  • Use goals and praise or other rewards.

    • Use a chart to list goals and track positive behaviors, then let your child know they have done well by telling them or by rewarding their efforts in other ways. Be sure the goals are realistic—small steps are important!

  • Discipline effectively.

  • Create positive opportunities.

    • Children with ADHD may find certain situations stressful. Finding out and encouraging what your child does well—whether it’s school, sports, art, music, or play—can help create positive experiences.

  • Provide a healthy lifestyle.

 

 
 

Our Approach

Clinical Evaluation

Prior to the child's first visit, parents and those involved in the child's daily life will be given a pre-evaluation that asks various questions about the child’s activity and behavior. This information gives Dr. Feldman a clearer understanding of the child's background and allow them to make the most accurate diagnosis. Throughout the child's first visit and the course of his or her treatment, we work closely with the family and conducts the most up-to-date standardized tests and assesments to ensure growth and development goals are achieved.

Assessment to Support Growth

Dr. Feldman utilizes special techniques that are play-based to help children learn how to sharpen motor skills, focus, and create neurological stimulus. Our team will complete an assessment and refer each patient to appropriate centers. We provide medicine management, case management, and medical advice where appropriate and applicable. 

Continued Follow-Up Care

Routine appointments are made with the child as needed to encourage continued growth and development and to track progress. The number of visits a child needs per year are based upon the child’s diagnosis and condition.

Book An Appointment

To make an appointment for a behavior and development consultation, call us at (949) 446-8990, or click below to fill out an appointment request, and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

About the Doctor

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GARY FELDMAN, MD

Pediatric Sleep Specialist

Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrician

With over 16 years of experience, Dr. Gary Feldman founded Ocean Medicine after developing a longstanding reputation for excellence in pediatric sleep and behavior medicine as the Medical Director of the Stramski Children's Developmental Center at Miller Children's & Women's Hospital Long Beach since 2004. He was named 2010 Physician of the Year by Miller Children's and Women's Hospital Long Beach, and has been named a Southern California Super Doctor since 2014. He has received numerous other awards acknowledging his distinctions in behavioral pediatrics and sleep medicine, and is a sought-after speaker on these topics as well as international adoption medine.