Being told your child should be tested for ADHD can make you feel a little nervous and unsettled. It's not easy knowing that your child may have a learning disorder. However, you may start to feel a little more comfortable about the whole thing as you learn more about what ADHD testing actually entails. There's no single test for ADHD. Rather, your child's doctor will use a combination of questionnaires, observations, and evaluations to determine whether or not your child does have ADHD. Here's a look at some of the tests and evaluations that are used most often.
The Vanderbilt Assessment Scale
This is one of the most common assessment scales used in the diagnosis of ADHD. It consists of 55 questions. Often, the doctor will ask your child some of these questions, and they'll ask you some of the other questions. Which questions will be asked of you and which will be asked of your child will depend on their age. These questions are things like "How often do you forget what instructions you were just given?" and "Do you have trouble finishing tasks?"
There are a few other conditions that are often misdiagnosed as ADHD. Anxiety and depression are two of them. The Vanderbilt Assessment Scale is helpful because it can help discern between these other disorders and ADHD, reducing the chances of a misdiagnosis.
Child Attention Profile
This is a questionnaire-style test that is generally sent to your child's teacher or teachers to fill out. The teacher will fill it out as they observe how your child acts and interacts at school. It will contain questions such as "How often does the child interrupt you while you're speaking?" and "How often does the child turn in incomplete work?" The results of this test alone won't diagnose ADHD, but they do give an important perspective since kids' symptoms are often most pronounced when they're in school and being asked to pay attention.
Brain Wave Tests
It has become more common to use brain wave tests to diagnose ADHD. The specific one used is called a NEBA brain scan, and it measures the brain waves generated in certain parts of the brain. If certain abnormalities are seen, this is additional evidence that points towards an ADHD diagnosis. A brain wave test is painless; your child will simply have to wear electrodes on their head for a few minutes while asked to perform simple tasks, such as solving math problems or writing down sentences.
ADHD testing is generally painless and simple. When it's all over, you will have some answers. Contact an ADHD treatment center for more information.