Archive for ADHD – Page 2

Holiday Message: Most Of All, Remember…

As we get closer to the Christmas break, life gets much busier…

Whether this is a religious holiday for you or not (i.e. Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanza…), no doubt your life has gotten much busier in the past few weeks.

And things become all about the work get togethers, the ‘secret santa’, the family functions, trying to honor family traditions, and of course – trying to find the “right” present for your loved ones.
And if it’s for your child, no doubt, there is the ‘hot gift’ of the season, which is way too hard to find… (I suspect those toy companies do it on purpose!)

This time of year can be very stressful and challenging.
We all put too much pressure on ourselves for the holiday season.

And during all of these stresses and pressures – there’s one important thing to remember: and that is WHY we do all of these things…

Think about it for a moment:

  • Why do you want to get your child or loved one the ‘right gift’?
  • Why do you want to spend time with family? (even if it is your parents, or in-laws, or aunts and uncles who are judgmental, don’t understand you, and don’t ‘get’ ADD…)
  • Why do you try so hard to keep ‘family traditions’ alive?

My argument is this:
We do all of these things so that we can hopefully experience an EMOTION.
All of this hard work, to get us to FEEL a certain way.

What is this feeling that we drive ourselves so hard to feel?

[highlight color="FFFF00"]In my view, we’re pursuing this: an emotion of connection, closeness and love.[/highlight]

And in our day to day lives – we are so busy, so concerned about the stresses of the day, and week, and month, that we don’t often stop and take the time to feel this life-fulfilling feeling with the people we love – especially if they have ADD/ADHD and we have to work so hard to support them… (or if we ourselves have ADD and have trouble keeping up with day to day life…)

My advice to you- and my ‘christmas message’ to you is this:

Take the time to experience that loving connection and feeling with your loved ones this holiday season.
Make THAT the specific goal, and find the time to do it.

For many people, the busy holiday season doesn’t actually lead to this feeling of connection, closeness and love. It just leads to stress, overwhelm, upset, and a desire to get back to the routine of work…
Or maybe you’ve heard yourself saying to yourself under your breath: “I need a holiday after my holiday!”

Now, I’m not saying that you need to avoid the family traditions, and the get togethers, and all of the busy things you want to do, or feel you need to do.
Rather, I’m suggesting this:

1) Be easy on yourself. Don’t push yourself so hard that you get run down, overwhelmed and are ready to snap. That doesn’t serve you, and it doesn’t serve the ones you love. If your house isn’t perfectly neat, or if the Christmas meal is missing the cranberry sauce (or if it’s even take out from a chinese restauarant!), be easy on yourself, and remember, the point of the holidays is a feeling of connection, closeness and love.

2) At some point in your holiday schedule – take some time to do something with the people you love most – and make sure that you nurture a sense of connection, closeness and love.
This may mean going for a walk, or going bowling, or just having a quiet chat when no one else is around.
And when you do this – be sure to open up, and share your feelings. This part is so important – because that will show your loved ones how you really feel.
You may even want to explain how you do all of the holiday ‘activities’ and traditions to try to make it a special time for the family, so that your loving connections will get even stronger. Talk about how important your loved ones are to you, and how much they mean to you.
Give specific examples of things they’ve done that you love and/or are proud of.

Don’t use general statements, like: “You know I love you son.”

Rather, use very specific comments like, “I love you just for who you are. And when you stood up for your friend who was in trouble last September, even though that was a hard time for you, I saw the power of your character, your loyalty and I was so proud. I love you for who you are.”

When a comment is general, kids and loved ones think you just read it out of a book. But when you open up, and acknowledge them for what they’ve done and who they are – then they know you mean it. Everybody appreciates when someone sees who they really are, and acknowledges them for being themselves.

And of course if this is a religious and/or cultural holiday for you, be sure to consider and pray on the true meaning of the holiday. This can deepen your spritual connection, which can be beneficial to you in so many ways.

I wish you happy holidays, and I want you to know that I truly appreciate you for allowing me to participate in your journey with ADD/ADHD. I am honored, and I really appreciate you.
I hope you have happy, fulfilling, connected and loving holidays.

Please share your thoughts in the comments below. And if you think this message can help someone else, please forward it to them.

Dr. Kenny

p.s. If you find this message helpful, you may also find my book: Attention Difference Disorder helpful. It is for parents of kids and teens with ADD/ADHD. You can find it on here. Depending on when you order, Amazon may be able to still get it to you by the holidays!


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Long Term Stimulant Use Improves School Grades

When kids or teens are diagnosed with ADD/ADHD, doctors generally recommend medication to help to control the symptoms.The most commonly used medications include the stimulant medications – namely medicines like: Concerta, Adderall, Adderall XR, Vyvanse, Metadate CD, Ritalin LA, Methylphenidate, Dextroamphetamine, and others.

While there are many studies showing that the ADHD symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity improve with the medicine, and cause short term academic improvements, there has been a lack of research to show long term academic benefits.

The studies summarized here clearly document that ADHD stimulant medication helps with long term academic success.

In this research, the research team followed 5700 children from birth until 18 years old. In that group, 277 boys and 93 girls were diagnosed with ADHD. Of those with the diagnosis, some decided to use medication, and some did not. When kids took ADHD medication, they generally started in elementary school, and took it for (on average) 30 months (i.e. just under 3 years).

Of the ADHD kids who were taking medication, by 13 years old, the medication children had improved reading scores compared to the kids with ADHD who had not taken medication. Children taking medication were more likely to attend school (i.e. less absenteeism), and they were 1.8 times less likely to be held back a year at school.

The lead researcher, Dr. Barbaresi was quoted as saying: “We can’t simply focus on the symptoms of ADHD,” Barbaresi said. “We really need to be focusing on the risk for poor outcomes in school and in other aspects of the child’s life,” he said. “That’s why we have to recognize these children and make sure they get appropriate treatment.”

To read more about these studies, click here.

What do you think? Has ADHD medication helped your child (or yourself) over the long term? Please share your thoughts in the comments below.


Dr. Kenny

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Procrastination in ADHD Kids and Teens

Does your ADD or ADHD child procrastinate a lot? If you’re like most parents, the answer is yes. And it likely leads to frustration, hassles, and maybe even battles.

And most parents are thinking: ” This whole thing could have been avoided, if my son (or daughter) didn’t leave this till the last minute!”

Procrastination is a complicated issue. There isn’t a one size fits all answer to it. To fully understand what’s going on with procrastination, and to help you to find solutions for it, I’ve interviewed Diane O’Reilly, from Indigo Tree Coaching below. She’ll help you to understand what’s going on with clutter, and also how to develop strategies to improve it.

To Join The Attention Difference Disorders Insiders Membership and

Participate in the Coaching Call for Parents

of Kids and Teens with ADD/ADHD:

“Overcome Procrastination”



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Conquering Clutter

Clutter is a universal problem for adults with ADD/ADHD. When there’s trouble dealing with the boring need to clean up little things, piles begin to build up.

Paperwork is often a big issue, as well as impulsively buying something that seemed great at the time, and now is just filling up more space.

And then clutter can get overwhelming…

It can lead to embarassment, and it can contribute to social problems – you don’t want people to come over because of how embarasing your clutter is. And then you may feel bad about your kids not having their friends over because of it.

And this can lead to guilt and shame.

On this post – I interview ADD Coach Lynne Edris (From Coaching ADDvantages) about how to clear clutter.

(watch the video until the end – you’ll not only hear me mess up (and have a good laugh over it), you’ll learn how you can get specific strategies and skills to conquer your clutter)

Join Us For the ADD Coaching Class: Conquer Your Clutter
On Monday October 24th at 9:15 pm Eastern Time

By joining the ‘Attention Difference Disorder Insiders Membership Site’
>>Click Here To Find Out More<<


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Back to School with ADHD

The end of the summer presents unique challenges for parents of kids and teens with ADHD – as they work to get their kids back into the routine for school.

We all want our kids to start off the year right, and to do the best that they can do this year at school.

I wrote an article on ‘back to school’ a couple of summers ago – and you can access it here: back to school with ADHD.

This year, on Wednesday August 17, 2011 at 8 pm Eastern time – I’ll be doing an interview on Attention Talk Radio about getting back to school.

You can read the information from the news release here:

DIG Coaching Practice Presents “Back to School with ADHD” on Attention Talk Radio with Host Jeff Copper and Psychiatrist, Dr. Kenny Handelman
Transitions can be difficult for those with ADHD, especially for children headed back to school. Host Jeff Copper talks with Dr. Kenny Handelman about strategies to transition back to school after the freedom of summer by gradually reintroducing homework.

Tampa, FL, August 09, 2011 –(– Attention Talk Radio, produced by DIG Coaching Practice, presents “Back to School with ADHD” with Kenny Handelman MD. Attention coach and host Jeff Copper talks with Dr. Handelman about the challenges facing ADHD children when it’s time to return to school after summer vacation. According to Dr. Handelman, the transition can be difficult for ADHD children, but parents can help prepare for the change by easing their ADHD child into it. Dr. Handelman shares strategies and tips for a smooth transition back to a routine after a summer of freedom.

Dr. Handelman, a board-certified psychiatrist in both the US and Canada, specializes in assessing and treating children and adolescents with ADHD. His practice is established at the Halton Healthcare Services in Oakville Trafalgar Hospital near Toronto, Canada. He is an adjunct professor of psychiatry at the University of Western Ontario where he won an excellence in teaching award in 2006. He teaches parents, kids, and educators about ADHD. He has appeared on TV and radio, talking about ADHD, and maintains a number of websites and an ADHD newsletter to give evidence-based, up-to-date, online information about ADD/ADHD. His websites garner more than half a million visitors each year.

He is the author of Attention Difference Disorder: How to Turn Your ADHD Child or Teen’s Differences into Strengths in 7 Simple Steps, foreword by Edward Hallowell MD. The book was released in June 2011. More information is available at

The program will be aired on Wednesday, August 17, 2011, at 8 pm ET, on Attention Talk Radio, a live, interactive, Internet talk-radio show hosted each week by attention coach Jeff Copper. The show focuses on insight and insightful thinking, preparing the mind to solve problems through insight or the sudden comprehension after viewing something in a different light. The show is hosted on a web-based platform so that anyone with a phone or a computer can listen, participate, or interact with the show.

The public is encouraged to participate by calling 646-652-4409 to listen or ask questions. The show schedule, stream, and archives are available at immediately following the show. Listeners can also subscribe to the archives via the RSS feed located on the host page or on iTunes.

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Harvard Psychiatrists: Disciplined Over Pharma Payments

Three prominent Harvard Psychiatrists – who are well known researchers in the field of ADHD have been disciplined over a failure to disclose their drug company ties. In reading a news article here, it is described that these physicians did not adequately disclose payments they received from pharma companies to: Harvard, MGH (Mass. General Hospital) and the federal government. Apparently new requirements came into effect in 2010 with the federal Physicians Payment Sunshine Act of 2010.

These three doctors: Dr. Biederman, Dr. Wilens and Dr. Spencer are very well published, very intelligent, and they make huge scientific contributions to the field of ADHD, as well as children’s mental health as a whole. I have personally attended several continuing medical education events where they have spoken, and I have found their material to have been of top quality and very helpful. Was it biased? In my experience – no. I found these doctors presented the science (which included their own research, as well as summarizing the research of many other doctors as well) in a balanced and useful way.

Apparently, the doctors wrote a ‘dear colleagues’ letter. It is quoted as saying:

“Our mistakes were honest ones. We always believed that we were complying in good faith with institutional policies. We now recognize that we should have devoted more time and attention to the detailed requirements of these policies and to their underlying objectives.”

While this is an unfortunate series of events – I still do hold these doctors in high esteem. They have contributed a lot of science to the field. The reality at this time is that the pharmaceutical companies fund research, and they support educational events. Although some may aspire to not have them support these events (to avoid biases), there are many ‘checks and balances’ in place, and the reality is that there are few other sources of funding to support major conferences and educational events.

Will I disregard the doctors’ research because of this?

Absolutely not.

Their research stands on its own merit. These doctors were not disciplined on any academic issues – rather on reporting funding.

I am sorry to hear that Drs. Biederman, Spencer and Wilens have had this trouble. I wish them well, and I look forward to reading their future research.

Are you concerned with pharma company’s influence on doctors, research and healthcare as a whole?

Please comment below.

Dr. Kenny

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Adam Levine Has ADHD

Another celebrity has come forward to share about his ADHD. Adam Levine – the singer from Maroon 5, and mentor on the TV show “The Voice” is helping to raise awareness about young adult and adult ADHD. He’s participating in a national education campaign called: Own It.

You can read more about the campaign here.

One of the biggest concerns that people have around ADD and ADHD is stigma. And stigma interferes with people getting the right diagnosis, and the right treatment. When someone like Adam is willing to come forward and share his story, this paves the way to increase awareness, and it can make a difference for thousands of people’s lives.

Adam – I’m impressed! Keep up the great work to support people with ADHD.


Dr. Kenny

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Attention Difference Disorder on Amazon

My new book, Attention Difference Disorder was just released yesterday (on June 7, 2011).

It was a whirlwind of a day. Very exciting indeed.

I had 18 radio interviews (across the USA), a newspaper interview, and then a live teleseminar call in the evening. The call was very well attended, and we’ve decided to post the replay (for people who couldn’t attend live). You can access the recording until Sunday night – here. There is also a special offer on that page – which will be there until the replay comes down – on Sunday night.

The great news:

Yesterday – my book started climbing the charts on Amazon. On – we ranked as high as #19 in the overall bestsellers category (that is for ALL of the books on Amazon), and my book was #1 in the categories of: Disorders and Diseases, Parenting School Aged Children, and Family Health.

And this morning – it was ranked #1 on in the Bestsellers ‘Movers and Shakers’ category – because in 24 hours, it went from ranking 38,000+ on the bestsellers list – to #19!

You can see the pictures below.

If you haven’t grabbed your copy – now’s the time. (the best way is to take advantage of our special bonus by clicking here)

Thanks for your support.


Dr. Kenny

AmazonCANumber191 Attention Difference Disorder on Amazon

Attention Difference Disorder on Bestsellers List

MoversShakersNumber1 Attention Difference Disorder on Amazon

Attention Difference Disorder: Number 1 Movers and Shakers Bestseller

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Attention Difference Disorder Book Now Available

Handelman ADD 200x300 Attention Difference Disorder Book Now Available

Attention Difference Disorder

I’m very excited to announce the release of my book: “Attention Difference Disorder: How To Turn Your ADHD Child or Teen’s Differences Into Strengths in 7 Simple Steps”. It is published by Morgan James, and the release date is June 7, 2011. By: Dr. Kenny Handelman. Forward by: Dr. Edward Hallowell.

You can read more about the book here: Attention Difference Disorder Book.

You can read the press release here.

Please join me for a ‘book launch online event’ – tonight – June 7th at 8 pm Eastern time. I will be doing a free teleseminar call – to teach you all about differences rather than deficits, and I’ll share my 7 steps system for parents to use to help their children and teens. There will be a special bonus for people who purchase the book during the live call. You can access the live call here: Attention Difference Disorder online live event.

And of course – you can get your copy on here.

I hope you enjoy the book!


Dr. Kenny

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Rory Bremner Has ADHD

Rory Bremner, the British comedian and TV personality, has shared that he has ADHD.

He started to consider it after finding out that one of his young relatives had the condition. This is often how many adults come to learn that they have ADHD.

Bremner recently did a BBC special called: ADHD and me.

Although I don’t watch BBC (I’m in Canada), I really appreciate and admire Bremner for sharing his experience and diagnosis with the public. This helps others to realize that ADHD is real, and it helps to break down stigma.

You can read more about this story in this BBC article.


Dr. Kenny

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