Daily Coaching and Professional Organizers May Help With ADHD

Medical News: USPSYCH: Daily Coaching and Professional Organizers May Help With ADHD - in Meeting Coverage, USPSYCH from MedPage Today

While drug or pharmacological treatments are the primary and usually first therapy for attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in adults psycho-social treatments may be a useful adjunct and improve patients' quality of life.

Psychosocial treatments include not only psychotherapy but less-well known approaches such as an ADHD "coach" and a professional organizer, said Carol E. Watkins, M.D., of Northern Country Psychiatric Associates in Baltimore at this national meeting.

Individual psychotherapy: This approach can help patients identify "maladaptive patterns" related to the ADHD and find better ways of coping with them. Studies have found that both the insight-oriented therapy and cognitive and behavioral therapy can be useful, Dr. Watkins said. ADHD can put a major strain on a marriage, Dr. Watkins said. Spouses may not understand that their partner's inattention and forgetfulness is not intentional. Extended couples therapy may help the non-ADHD spouse learn to give supportive structure without being controlling, Dr. Watkins said.

"ADHD Coaching" is distinct from psychotherapy, Dr. Watkins said. An ADHD coach talks to patients at regular, often daily intervals and helps them define, clarify, and prioritize their goals. ADHD coaching is relatively new phenomenon and currently there is no regulation or oversight of this profession so it is important to make sure that coaches are trained, have experience and better yet, are part of a treatment team and supervised by a licensed or registered psychologist. ADHD is often seen with other co-morbid disorders, and untrained "coaches" can misunderstand the nature of the presentation of different disorders.

Dr. Watlin further states that a Professional Home Organizer can be hired for patients with cluttered, disorganized homes. Professional organizers come to the house and help determine what can be thrown away. Working out who to hire to do exactly what can be difficult. It may be best to see a psychologist who is trained to evaluate the exact nature of your ADHD, develop a treatment plan and monitor that plan, while using a paraprofessional to implement it.


This blog is not offered as medical advice or as a means of diagnosing or treating ADHD, learning disabilities, autism, relationship issues or any other disorder. Don't go on line and take an autism, ADHD, intelligence or relationship "test." Diagnosis is complex, and it involves not just looking for symptoms of a disorder, but also ruling out other disorders that might look just like what your worried about. So avoid these on line "tests" which are nothing more than a collection of symptoms. You need to see a licensed or registered professional for that. You can obtain a referral from the British Columbia Psychological Association for a psychologist near you to help you with these matters, or if you are in another province or state contact their psychological association.

My web page lists a number of resources you can make use of yourself in dealing with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) as well as other learning and social disorders. Please visit it at www.adhdhelp.ca or one of my other sites at either Psychology Today, AAMFT, PSYRIS or my professional site.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) assessment and treatment services are offered for individuals, couples, families, children and adolescents in the Burnaby, Vancouver, Coquitlam, Port Moody, New Westminster and Maple Ridge areas of the lower mainland. This includes neuro-developmental assessments, psycho-education and cognitive behaviour therapy. I also provide diagnostic assessments for autism and Asperger's Disorder in my Burnaby office.

Dr. Jim Roche
Registered Psychologist, British Columbia 01610