Magazine article National Association of School Psychologists. Communique

A Fast Read for ADHD

Magazine article National Association of School Psychologists. Communique

A Fast Read for ADHD

Article excerpt

A Fast Read for ADHD THE ADHD EXPLOSION: MYTHS, MEDICATION, MONEY, AND TODAY'S PUSH FOR PERFORMANCE S. P. Hinshaw & R. M. Scheffler 2014, Oxford University Press

REVIEW BY FRANCES PARIS

What do you get when you cross a psychologist with a health economist? An outstanding book with current information and provocative, cogent arguments. The identification and treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is presented from a variety of perspectives such as pharmaceutical advertisements, international comparisons, postsecondary outcomes, and the influences of cultures, values, and gender. The contents provide an instant inservice for deeper discussions by school psychologists regarding differential diagnosis for eligibility and treatment within or outside of special education programs and services. School psychologist-led parent training will be enhanced using information from this book to expose myths, question medication, recognize benefits of behavioral interventions, and broaden the understanding of cultural influences on identification rates.

Typical procedures for evaluation are not utilized when a 15-minute appointment with a general practitioner yields a diagnosis; rather, the authors support a realistic and comprehensive approach to diagnosis and treatment using research-based sources. Using case scenarios, the issues of not recognizing coexisting mental health conditions when tools and assessment procedures are aimed at ADHD alone are illustrated. Questioning the diagnosis when documented observations contradict the diagnosis or point to the presence of comorbid conditions better supports individuals with ADHD. As for intervention, the use of medication alone is discouraged: The combination of medication, when prescribed, with skill-building interventions yields better outcomes in the lives of individuals with ADHD.

ADHD is expressed on a continuum from mild to severe across nine symptoms. …

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