UPDATES, Q & A, IDEAS
Updates, ideas, Insights, Strategies, and Resources for Education and Empowerment

Is ADHD overdiagnosed, underdiagnosed or misdiagnosed?
Multiple large scale studies have shown from a 5-10 percent incidence of ADHD in the general public with more males especially for the Hyperactive Impulsive Type. This far exceeds the number of children who are diagnosed, identified by their schools or are provided with treatment and special education.

In most cases where clear symptoms of either the Inattentive or Hyperactive-Impulsive types of ADHD are present, the diagnosis is most likely to be ADHD. However, there is no single test for ADHD and ADHD is often comorbid or mixed with other disorders--especially learning disorders,and psychological or behavioral disorders.

Nevertheless, there are some disorders which may be confused with or combined with ADHD including severe anxiety, sleep apnea, auditory and language processing disorders, posttraumatic stress disorder,

There are also events or conditions which may create symptoms resembling or overlapping with ADHD including hearing loss, traumatic brain injuries, excessive lead or mercury levels in the blood, overexposure to pesticides especially non-organic berries.. There are medical conditions such as Celiac Disease which are associated with higher levels of ADHD symptoms. Children who have suffered mild or moderate traumatic brain injury may have many symptoms of ADHD.

Recent research has shown that non-organic strawberries and other fruits and vegetables have organophosphate pesticides which may cause or exacerbate symptoms of ADHD. There is no research yet showing the impact of these toxic pesticides on children who already have ADHD or LD or have risk factors. My guess is that those at risk may be more adversely affected.

Future topics:

1) Will they grow out of it? What is a normal range delay and what is a problem that would benefit from early intervention.

2) Trends in test accommodations including high school, college, post-graduate and licensing exams: Is it getting harder to get extra time and other accommodations? In some cases yes and in others not.

3) Common psychological reactions in children and adults with learning and attention disorders including anxiety, depression, social difficulties and low self-esteem.

4) Parents reactions to recommendations of medication as one part of a treatment plan for ADHD.

5) The importance of early diagnosis of LD and ADHD issues which allows for early intervention.

6) Making optimal use of accommodations in college for LD and ADHD
ALAN SIEGEL, PHD
Email: AlanSiegelPhD@Gmail.com

Berkeley Office-- Elmwood-Rockridge area

San Francisco Office -- Presidio Heights area
(510) 527 7929

Assessment, Diagnosis, Treatment Planning, Consultation, Psychotherapy, Training.

Specializing in ADHD, Learning Disabilities, Psychological Disorders,  Testing Accommodations, 504 Plans, IEP Meetings, LD/ADHD issues related to college planning, undergraduate, graduate and  license exam accommodations. Consultation for parents and schools on isssues related to LD/ADHD and psychologial disordersa and school accommodations.