Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder ("ADHD") is often first considered when a child experiences difficulties at home, school or social situations. While symptoms can vary depending on the child and situation, they generally fall into three categories: hyperactivity, inattention, and impulsivity. As a parent, where do you start? If you live in Detroit, you start with the List of ADHD Resources for Children and Parents in Detroit.
While ADHD can be diagnosed through high-tech scans of brain activity, a functional diagnosis is more often made by a neurologist, doctor or master's level counselor, who assesses the child's attention and behaviors. As an article in AttitudeMag.com points out, there are pros and cons associated with each type of professional. If you want to take a comprehensive approach, consider one of the Metro-Detroit area's hospital-based programs/clinics that offer diagnostic and consultation services:
- Ann Arbor: The ADHD Clinic at C.S. Mott Children's Hospital / University of Michigan provides diagnostic service for children (4 to 18), including a physical, neuropsychological and psychiatric assessment.
- Detroit: The Psychiatry and Psychology Department of The Children's Hospital of Michigan provides diagnostic and consultation services, as well as individual, family and play therapy.
Schools and Special Education Programs for Children
Special Schools: While a child diagnosed with ADHD often has difficulty at school, many children can find success with appropriate accommodations. There are, however, several schools in the Metro-Detroit area that specialize in helping children with learning disabilities, including ADHD:
- Ann Arbor: Ann Arbor Academy is a private school that specializes in providing a socially supportive setting and strength-based approach for students with learning challenges, such as dyslexia, autism, and ADHD.
- Birmingham: Eton Academy specializes in Learning Disability instruction via Mel Levine's Schools Attuned.
Grades: 1 to 12
- West Bloomfield: Learning Circle Academy specializes in children with complex learning disabilities.
Grades: 4 to 11
Total Students: 24
Social Skills Programs: Social Skill Builders offers peer group programs in Grosse Pointe Woods for kids aged 5 to 15 with social skill difficulties, including children with ADHD and Asperger's Syndrome. The program helps kids learn how to listen, read body language, handle teasing and make friends. Group programs run eight weeks and are arranged by age. For more information call (313) 884-2462.
Summer Camps: Ned Hallowell ADD/ADHD Summer Enrichment Camp is held as an annual summer camp for students grade 9 through 12 at the Leelanau School in Glen Arbor, Michigan. For more information call (800) 533-5262.
Special Education Resources: Project Find Michigan helps children and young adults (birth through age 26) find appropriate special programs and education services, including a free initial evaluation.
Resources for Parents
Parent-to-Parent Training: CHADD offers fee-based Parent-to-Parent training that includes information about parenting strategies, educational rights, and teen challenges. Teachers in the Metro-Detroit area include:
- Macomb County: Linda O'Brien (LindaOB725@aol.com)
- Oakland County: Brenda Mann (firstname.lastname@example.org) or Fran Parker (email@example.com)
Parent Support Groups: One of the most important things you can do as a parent of a child with ADHD is to find other parents who are dealing with the same issues and who can share information about their experience. Children and Adults with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder ("CHADD") is a national organization with several satellites in the Metro-Detroit area run by volunteers. Each offers a support group for parents:
- The Eastern Oakland County satellite offers a parent support group from 7 PM to 9 PM on the first Monday of the month in Bloomfield Hills: Way Elementary School on West Long Lake Road (just east of Telegraph). For more information call 248-988-6716
- The Washtenaw County satellite offers a parent support group from 7 PM to 9 PM on the 4th Tuesday of each month in Ann Arbor: Washtenaw Intermediate School District, 1819 S. Wagner Road.
- The Western Wayne County satellite offers a parent support group from 7 PM to 9 PM on the third Monday of each month in Northville: Northville High School, Room 141, 45700 Six Mile Road.
Information and Resources: Bridges4Kids is a Michigan-based, non-profit organization created by parents to help parents with special-needs children, including those “at risk” or with learning disabilities. The organization helps parents find information and resources, as well as partner with schools and their communities.
Resources specific to ADHD