If you or your loved one has ADHD, finding the right doctor to provide the best possible care is essential. Many doctors specialize in treating ADHD, but it is not easy to get the best one.
If you want to avoid the mistakes people make when choosing doctors for ADHD, here are the tips for finding the right doctor.
Not Checking the Credentials
You would not go to a doctor who was not certified, so why would you visit an ADHD specialist who does not have the proper credentials?
The basic qualifications for an ADHD doctor are a medical degree and specialized training in diagnosing and treating ADHD. However, not all doctors who treat ADHD have these qualifications. Some may have only a general medical degree or no medical degree. It would be best to always ask about your doctor’s qualifications before making an appointment.
Ensure that the doctor you are seeing has experience in treating ADHD. If you do not know anyone who can refer you to a specialist, you can always check the doctor’s credentials online on their website or the hospital’s website.
Therefore, make sure the doctor you choose is:
- Certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology
- A member of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
- Experienced in treating children, adolescents, and adults with ADHD
Doing research upfront will save you a lot of time and hassle in the long run.
Not Asking About Treatment Methods
There are various methods out there, and what works for one person might not work for another. So, you must ask your doctor about the different treatment methods available and find one right for you.
Some standard treatment methods include:
- Stimulants: These help improve focus, but they can also have side effects like trouble sleeping and decreased appetite.
- Non-stimulants: These often take longer to work, but they don’t have the same side effects as stimulants.
- Behavioral therapy: It can help you learn how to manage your ADHD symptoms better.
- Diet and exercise: Eating healthy and staying active can help improve your focus and energy levels.
- Antidepressants: These can help with some of the coexisting conditions that often come along with ADHD, like anxiety and depression.
Your doctor should be able to explain the pros and cons of each method so that you can make an informed decision. If they cannot do so, it might be best to find a new doctor.
Not Considering the Cost
Treating ADHD can be expensive, especially if you require medication. Ensure to ask your doctor about the cost of treatment and whether your insurance will cover it. You may also consider whether the doctor offers sliding scale fees or payment plans.
- Sliding Fees: A reduced fee based on your ability to pay
- Payment Plans: An arrangement to pay for services over time
Not Asking for Recommendations
While you might want to select the first doctor you find, you must get recommendations from people you trust. Talk to your friends, family, and even your child’s teacher to see if they have any suggestions on an excellent ADHD doctor.
Getting a recommendation from someone who has firsthand experience with the doctor will always be more helpful than choosing a random name from the internet.
Not Talking About Your Expectations
Before making an appointment, understand what you want from your ADHD doctor. Do you want them to be a diagnostician or someone who will also provide treatment? Are you hoping for medication management, or do you want help developing other coping mechanisms? Make sure to communicate your expectations clearly from the outset.
Whether you seek an ADHD diagnosis for yourself or your family, it is essential to research and choose the right doctors for ADHD you feel comfortable with. Remember to avoid these common mistakes, and you will be on your way to finding the best possible care.