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The ADHD Book of Lists: A Practical Guide for Helping Children and Teens with Attention Deficit Disorders, 2nd Edition by Sandra F. Rief

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1.23 Alternative and Complementary Treatments

There are many alternative treatments parents may hear about that supposedly cure or significantly help children with ADHD. It can be quite enticing to parents who hear that a certain nonmedical product or treatment can improve their child's behaviors and symptoms. Based on decades of research and scientific evidence, medication and behavior therapy are proven most effective in the treatment of ADHD and are, therefore, the primary treatments recommended by the experts and the major national professional organizations and associations.

  • Complementary treatments are those that are used in addition to the standard treatment of FDA-approved ADHD medication and behavioral therapy for added benefit and improved functioning. There are several complementary interventions that may be helpful for individual children and teens and could be part of his or her multimodal treatment plan.
  • Alternative treatments, however, are those that are used instead of the proven ADHD treatments of medication therapy or behavior therapy and most likely will not have a significant positive effect on the child's symptoms and functioning.
  • Many parents are reluctant or opposed to treating their child with medication. The many advertisements in magazines, TV, radio, or the Internet making claims about various products or treatments that cure ADHD symptoms can sound very convincing and believable.
  • Parents need to be cautious and informed consumers when considering alternative ...

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