Home > School and Learning > Learning Differences > Diagnosing Lds > Would ADHD Medication Help Keep LD Son on Task?

Expert Iconexpert advice MORE

Would ADHD Medication Help Keep LD Son on Task?

LD and ADD/ADHD Expert Advice from Eileen S. Marzola, Ed.D.

Q: In first grade, my ninth-grader was tested for ADHD. He was diagnosed with learning disabilities, but not ADHD. It's been tough, but he's come a very long way and has done really well until now. He's at a very large high school and is struggling to survive. At a recent review, a school psychologist suggested that maybe he's overwhelmed with the tougher, more in-depth classes, ninth-grade changes, and so forth. I hadn't thought of him as being so overwhelmed that he feels like he can't do it, so why try.

Even though my son doesn't have ADHD, he does have problems focusing, concentrating, and staying on task. Would he benefit from any of the ADHD medicines, and if so, is there a natural alternative? I would try just about anything to help him, but I don't want to put him on any drugs.

A: It certainly sounds like it would be worth your while to contact a doctor who deals with teenagers with ADHD and discuss options available to you. I'd call CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Disorders) at 1-800-233-4050 or go to their website at www.chadd.org for a referral in your community. There are behavioral interventions that may help your son, but unfortunately I have not seen research supports for natural alternatives to drugs.

You might also want to have a look at a really useful book designed to help students learn how to learn: Study Strategies Made Easy: A Practical Plan for School Success by Leslie Davis, Sandi Sirotowitz, and Harvey C. Parker.

More on: Expert Advice

For more than 20 years, Eileen Marzola has worked with children and adults with learning disabilities and attention deficit disorders, and with their parents and teachers. She has been a regular education classroom teacher, a consultant teacher/resource teacher, an educational evaluator/diagnostician, and has also taught graduate students at the university level. Marzola is an adjunct assistant professor of education at Teachers College, Columbia University, and Hunter College of the City University of New York. She also maintains a private practice in the evaluation and teaching of children with learning disabilities and attention deficit disorders.

Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.


10 Best Creative Apps for Kids
Looking for apps that foster creativity? Check out these top-rated art and music apps for kids.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

A New Intergalactic Reading Adventure!
Get your reluctant reader hooked on an irresistible new story, Galactic Hot Dogs! Join the Book 1 reading marathon, and get behind-the-scenes tidbits on the official Galactic Hot Dogs blog. Also, print this cool Galactic Hot Dogs reading log to keep your bookworm excited about reading!

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!

stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks