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Frequently Asked Questions

The school says my child needs Ritalin; where do I get it?

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School personnel do not have the medical training necessary to tell parents to place their children on medication.  CHADD and the National Resource Center on ADHD believe that it is inappropriate for individual professionals to offer advice outside their field of training, expertise, or licensing.  While teachers and other school personnel play a critical role in identifying potential education problems, they are not qualified either to diagnose a medical condition or suggest specific treatments for addressing that medical condition.

In general, only a physician (M.D. or D.O.) who is properly licensed may prescribe medications used to treat ADHD (prescribing privileges are regulated by state law for other professions, including nurse practitioners, physician assistants, and, in two states [New Mexico and Louisiana] Ph.D. psychologists with with advanced training in psychopharmacology).  Because ADHD is a medical condition, it should be diagnosed by a pediatrician, neurologist, psychiatrist, psychologist, clinical social worker, or other properly licensed mental health provider who has experience evaluating and treating individuals with ADHD.  Because some symptoms of ADHD may be symptoms of other conditions, it is essential that you consult a trained professional and obtain a thorough evaluation and formal diagnosis for your child before beginning any particular course of treatment.  

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Frequently Asked Questions
What is FAPE under IDEA?
I get really stressed over the holidays. Do you have any suggestions to help me cope?
What is Executive Function?
Can you help me find a doctor or mental health professional?
Is there a simple test to diagnose ADHD?
What is Section 504?
If I request an evaluation, doesn't the school have to do it?
The school says my child has ADHD; now what do I do?
My child has been diagnosed with ADHD; isn't he automatically qualified for Section 504 services?
What is FAPE under 504?
What is the difference between Section 504 and IDEA?
My child has ADHD but doesn't qualify for an IEP; can he still qualify under Section 504?
My child gets all As and Bs, can she still get accommodations?
Can someone with ADHD join the military?
I need information on ADD, not ADHD! Do you have any information on ADD?
I've heard of auditory processing disorder (APD.) Could my child have that instead of ADHD?
Are Charter Schools required to follow IDEA?
Does my child need to be physically disabled to get services?
Can a woman with ADHD take stimulant medication while pregnant?
I'm an adult; doesn't ADHD only affect children?
What is LRE?
Is it illegal to carry ADHD medications?
If my child has an IEP or gets special education, does she have to be in a different classroom?
My child started taking medication and has developed tics. What do I do?
My daughter wants to play college basketball. Will NCAA rules force her to stop taking her ADHD medication?
My child is very bright. He can't have ADHD, too, can he?
Can a woman with ADHD take non-stimulant medications while pregnant?
Are children who take stimulant medications more likely to abuse drugs or alcohol later in life?
Can you help me find a summer camp for my child?
Now that the holidays are over, how do I get things back to normal?
Obesity and ADHD: What's the connection?
Smoking and ADHD: What's the connection?
My child goes to a private (non-public) school. Do I have a right to see my child's educational records?
Marijuana is now legal in some areas of the U.S. What is the impact of taking marijuana for the teenager or young adult with ADHD?
Does the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 cover people with ADHD?
View all Frequently Asked Questions

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