Treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Medications vs. Alternative Therapy
A 14 month study conducted by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) Collaborative Multiside Multimodal Treatment Study of Children with Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (MTA) assigned 579 children with ADHD combined-type to four different control groups of treatments: medication management, intensive behavioral treatment, an optimal combination of both approaches, and usual care (what ever treatment families chose to obtain though their local community providers). Over a 14 month period, the groups were assessed in multiple domains before, during, and at treatment endpoint. Study findings revealed that all four groups showed varied reductions in symptoms over time, though with significant differences among them in degrees of changes. The study also found that for ADHD symptoms, children in the combined medication management and behavioral treatment groups showed much greater improvement than those in the other three groups. Only the combined treatment and care proved consistently superior (Jensen, 2001).
While medication for children with ADHD is not a cure all by any means, sometimes it is necessary to combat the symptoms of ADHD. If behavior therapy doesn't alleviate symptoms, medication can help in conjunction with continued behavior therapy. This enables your child to learn the necessary behaviors to function at their full potential. While coping with ADHD is a tiring and difficult task, it is a disorder that affects the entire family. Studies show that the best course of action is learning about ADHD, modifying child, parent, and sibling behaviors and reactions to the symptoms, and medication when needed, with frequent observation. ADHD is a real and serious disorder that can lead to depression, learning difficulties, substance abuse, and anti- social behavior if left untreated.
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