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My 14-year-old daughter has recently begun treatment for inattentive-type ADHD. From the beginning, we have involved her in her own diagnosis and treatment and have asked for her input as we created a list of behavioral goals and put together a treatment plan. She is now responding well to treatment, but I’m not sure that she really comprehends the nature of her condition. She keeps asking us “When can I stop my medication?” and “Why does everyone say there’s something wrong with me?” We know how important it is for her to understand and participate in her own care. What can we do to make this happen?

 

Receiving a diagnosis of ADHD can be a blow for most children and adolescents, and some take longer than others to adjust in a positive way. That is why it is so important to involve children and adolescents in as many of the steps in evaluation and treatment as possible.

Adolescents, particularly, do not want to stand out from their peers in any way, so obtaining buy-in to the target goals and treatment plan is especially important at this age. Part of the treatment for your daughter should include ways of keeping the diagnosis and treatment plan as private as she wants.

This might include decisions (that she is part of ) to figure out a medication schedule that does not involve taking medication at school, arranging for tutoring outside of school hours, etc. And, of course, the more good information she has about ADHD and its treatment at every stage the better.

 

Last Updated
5/11/2013
Source
ADHD: What Every Parent Needs to Know (Copyright © 2011 American Academy of Pediatrics)
The information contained on this Web site should not be used as a substitute for the medical care and advice of your pediatrician. There may be variations in treatment that your pediatrician may recommend based on individual facts and circumstances.