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Toronto ADHD Assessment

Psychological Assessment for Attention-Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) 

Are you or a loved one struggling with time management? Difficulties with procrastination? Chronic overwhelm? Failing to live up to potential? Are you wondering if ADHD may be at play? We can help. Our psychologists offer comprehensive psychological assessments and ADHD assessments for adults, teens, and children. If you suspect that ADHD may be affecting your life, reach out today and let us help you get a proper assessment for ADHD.

What are the symptoms of ADHD?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by executive function impairments. ADHD is sometimes referred to as Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD); however, this is an out-of-date term and ADHD is the primary term used in diagnostic systems today. Common difficulties experienced by people with ADHD include: 

 

  • Challenges with regulating attention

  • Lateness and time management difficulties

  • Frequent impulsivity

  • Challenges in listening to others or following instructions 

  • Managing emotions

  • Constant internal restlessness

  • Hyperactivity and reckless or disinhibited behaviour

  • Difficulties with task initiation

  • Frequent procrastination

  • Following up on commitments and promises

  • Maintaining healthy habits and personal routines

  • Short-term memory impairments, and 

  • Often losing items and materials needed 

ADHD Subtypes

There are three main subtypes of ADHD: primarily hyperactive/impulsive, primarily inattentive, and combined subtypes. Those with the primarily hyperactive/impulsive subtype are more likely to struggle with symptoms including frequent internal restlessness, impulsivity, hyperactivity, emotion dysregulation, verbal impulsivity, and other difficulties associated with impaired impulse control. ADHD primarily inattentive, refers to the subtype of ADHD characterized by difficulties paying attention, challenges with regulating focus and awareness, poor attention-to-detail, forgetfulness, and losing objects frequently, among other symptoms.

 

People with the primarily inattentive subtype of ADHD are more likely to have been ‘missed’ and have made it to adulthood without a diagnosis. The reason for this is that whereas hyperactive/impulsive ADHD is characterized by disruptive, dysregulated behaviour (especially in children) that can be challenging for those around someone with this subtype of ADHD (i.e. parents, teachers), inattentive ADHD is more likely to cause impairments for people experiencing it rather than those around them. Additionally, stereotypes about ADHD often have people focus on images of wild, out-of-control boys; those experiencing less hyperactivity and struggling predominantly with attention or organizational issues may not be recognized as having ADHD.  What’s important to know is that you can have ADHD even without super obvious hyperactive or impulsive symptoms. The final subtype of ADHD is the combined subtype, which as the name suggests is an ADHD presentation in which someone experiences multiple hyperactive/impulsive and inattentive symptoms of ADHD.

ADHD is often not taken especially seriously as a disorder. Many people will refer to themselves as just ‘a bit ADHD,’ and perhaps dismiss the need for an ADHD assessment or ADHD treatment. This is usually due to knowledge gaps regarding the real-world impacts of ADHD. When unmanaged, ADHD can have a tremendous impact on the life of the person with the disorder as well as the people living with them. 

 

People with untreated ADHD may experience any of the following real-world consequences:

 

  • Relationship impairments, including increased conflict, potential for misunderstandings, and marital dissatisfaction

  • Occupational impairments, including greater difficulty getting a job and keeping a job. People with ADHD are more likely to be unemployed than people without ADHD. They are also more likely to be underemployed (i.e. not having enough hours of employment) and to experience a range of difficulties at work.

  • Personal impairments, including challenges with starting and maintaining health-related behaviours (i.e. exercising, eating well, sleeping well, etc.), personal hygiene (i.e. brushing teeth, showering regularly, doing laundry, etc.) , and feeling like they are not living up to their potential

  • Social impairments, such as struggling to make and maintain friendships and other relationships

  • Financial impairments, such as increased risk of overspending, impulse buying, poor money management, and increased risk of carrying debt

  • Academic impairments, such as struggling in school, failing to keep up with assignments, turning in assignments at the last minute, showing a greater likelihood of disruptive classroom behaviour in younger kids and teens, and a higher risk of academic suspension or expulsion

  • Physical health impairments, such as increased risk of being overweight or experiencing obesity, and the negative effects of behaviours such as smoking and substance use, as well as decreased overall physical well-being as a result of not engaging in health-related behaviours (see above)

  • Mental health impairments, such as increased risk of experiencing an anxiety or mood disorder such as Generalized Anxiety Disorder or Major Depressive Disorder as well as an overall increased risk of experiencing at least one significant mental health problem. When ADHD is involved, you’re never just dealing with ADHD - experiences of ADHD typically come along with other mental health challenges too. 

 

As you can see, ADHD encompasses a whole lot more than just challenges with attention or hyperactivity. When unrecognized, untreated, and unmanaged, ADHD can affect and impair virtually all areas of a person’s life. This is why assessing and diagnosing ADHD is so important.

What's Involved in a Toronto ADHD Assessment?

What’s involved in a psychological assessment for ADHD?

If you are considering an ADHD diagnosis for yourself or for a loved one, our psychologists can provide you with a comprehensive psychological or psychoeducational assessment. Psychological assessments are a thorough way to explore the possibility that you or a loved one may have ADHD. Getting the correct diagnosis is essential for helping you explore what steps you can take to get the help that you need. Although the assessment may or may not confirm that you or your loved one has ADHD, it could also point to other possibilities that are at play in addition to or possibly instead of ADHD. In addition, comprehensive evaluation can uncover learning disabilities and other impairments that sometimes accompany ADHD or resemble ADHD. At its core, an assessment aims to answer the question: “Why is this person struggling?” Through comprehensive exploration, discussion, meetings, and assessment measures, our psychologists will work with you to better understand that question. All of our psychological assessments also come with specific treatment recommendations to help you utilize the information gained from the process. If the assessment confirms ADHD, you will also get specific recommendations for interventions, treatment plans, and accommodations that can be used to support you or your loved one with ADHD.

Our approach

  • Comprehensive intake to understand current areas of challenge

  • Assessment for possible ADHD

  • Evaluating other diagnostic possibilities and the possibility of more than one diagnosis

  • Providing specific recommendations for treatment, intervention, and resources following the assessment process

Our psychologists provide:

  • Comprehensive psychological assessments

  • Assessment for ADHD and related disorders

  • Assessment for learning disabilities and learning challenges

Developing solutions, strategies, and getting effective treatment is easiest when you know what’s going on! If you are looking for an assessment for ADHD, please reach out at the button below.

Mindful Awareness Practices (MAPs) is an 8-week online group  mindfulness-based program for adult ADHD that can help with improving attention, emotion regulation, and many aspects of ADHD.

Learn more! 

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