ADHD
Assessment



What is ADHD?

According to The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM V), ADHD is a complex psychiatric condition that often persists over a lifetime. Symptoms can vary amongst individuals and present differently for boys, girls, men, and women, but fall into three categories:

  • Predominantly Inattentive Presentation — the person basically has difficulty with organizing or finishing a task. They find it hard to pay attention to details and find it difficult to follow instructions or conversations.
  • Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation — the person finds it hard to keep still. They fidget or talk a lot. The person is restless, impulsive and could interrupt others at inappropriate times. They have difficulty waiting their turn and find it hard to listen to directions.
  • Combined Presentation — a person whose symptoms include all those of listed above and whose symptoms stand out equally predominant.

ADHD usually becomes problematic for an individual once the symptoms begin to interfere with the quality of social, academic or workplace functioning.

Who Can Have ADHD?

ADHD does not discriminate by gender, age, or race. About one million Canadians are currently living with ADHD; these individuals come from diverse age, race and gender demographics. ADHD symptoms usually begin in childhood and often go unnoticed until adulthood, at which point individuals begin the process of seeking diagnosis and treatment. (Please note that while the term ADD is sometimes used instead of ADHD, both terms refer to the same condition. ADHD is now the preferred term as it encompasses the full spectrum of attention deficit presentation and treatment. An ADD assessment is thus exactly the same as an ADHD assessment.)

Symptoms of ADHD

Do you or a loved one:

  • Have a hard time paying attention to what someone is saying, even when they are speaking directly to you?
  • Have a difficult time relaxing - both physically and mentally - in your free time?
  • Tend to fidget or engage your hands and feet in situations where you must sit for long periods of time?
  • Find yourself easily distracted by sensory stimulation (noises, smells, activity) around you?
  • Have a hard time organizing yourself?
  • Regularly forget appointments and commitments?
  • Have emotional outbursts and become easily angry, impatient or irritable?

Even if the above ADHD signs are regularly observed in an individual, it does not necessarily confirm a diagnosis of ADHD. However, when these symptoms become significantly pronounced and begin to impact one’s life and functioning, individuals may want to be formally tested for ADHD.

If you or a loved one are experiencing symptoms of ADHD, a standardized assessment by a registered professional will help determine the extent to which you formally meet the criteria for an ADHD diagnosis. This test will include computerized simulations and assessments, behavioural analyses, and various other assessments administered at the discretion of the professional providing the evaluation. This process is thorough, as it can be difficult to distinguish ADHD from learning disorders, processing disorders, or other conditions that tend to mimic or co-exist with ADHD.

How I Can Help

I am a Registered Psychologist with a specialty in psycho-educational, cognitive and psychological assessments for children, adolescents and adults. I bring more than fifteen years of psychology and assessment expertise to provide the highest level of support to individuals and families from diverse backgrounds. My goal is to help you embrace your uniqueness to build a more joyful, healthy and productive life.

I know what it feels like to live with ADHD. I understand its deep challenges as well as the opportunities it provides for growth, meaning, and connection. I work from this unique vantage point of understanding and empathy to provide you with a professional ADHD assessment that will help you discover your potential to grow and thrive.

I bring my extensive psychological assessment experience to provide ADHD assessments for children, adolescents, and adults.

For your convenience, I offer my ADHD assessment and screening services from both Calgary and Bragg Creek practise locations. I also welcome clients from Redwood Meadows, Millarville, Priddis, Cochrane, Springbank, Black Diamond and surrounding areas.

Many government and publicly-funded ADHD assessment agencies have long wait lists - sometimes as long as one year or more. This means that many are forced to wait long periods of time for the funding and support they require. In contrast, I work hard to provide open doors for my clients and strive to provide you with a much shorter time frame.

If you or a loved one suspects you might have ADHD, I can help. Please contact me today to book an assessment.

The Process

Consultation

We will begin with an initial consultation, in which I will ask specifically tailored questions and focus on any behavior symptoms associated with ADHD. I will also answer any questions and concerns you may have. This will give me a better understanding of your unique situation, your history, and the areas of functioning where you experience the greatest impact from your symptoms.

Assessment

Standardized assessments are used to determine the extent to which you formally meet the diagnostic criteria for ADHD. The standardized assessments comprise of intellectual functioning, computerized simulation, questionnaires and checklists. Afterward, I will review your results with you and provide analysis, integration, interpretation and feedback with recommendations tailored to your unique needs.

Report (optional)

A formal or summary report can be provided. This is the most expensive part of the process. In some cases, clients do not need a report; however, for many, such a report is needed for a variety of reasons. In this report, we will identify your strengths, development areas, learning profile, appropriate strategies, as well as resources and recommendations to support you in your education, work and daily living.

Fees

Professional fees are $190.00 per hour for consultations, report writing and form completion. These fees are payable after each session via cash or cheque. A flat rate fee is calculated for comprehensive psychoeducational, professional, vocational, ADHD or career assessment packages.

For your convenience, we provide official receipts, as some health insurance plans and extended health care benefits packages will reimburse incurred costs. In some cases, government-sponsored agencies such as Children’s Services and Alberta Human Services will provide coverage as well. Additionally, psychological services are considered a tax-deductible medical expense and you can use your payment receipt as an official tax receipt.

Assessment materials are charged separately and we will inform you of additional costs upfront.

Sometimes, clients will request a referral letter. We do not charge for referral letters in cases where a formal written report is not required. In this case, referral letters are included in the overall fee. Pending the results of your assessment, we will review whether or not a referral letter is necessary.

We require 24 hours advance notice should there be a need to cancel a booked appointment.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What Causes ADHD? The causes of ADHD are complex. Approximately 75% of cases appear to be genetic or hereditary, while the other 25% of cases stem from neurological issues such as trauma, infection, toxin exposure, in-utero exposure to tobacco or alcohol or maternal nutrient deficiencies passed on through pregnancy.
  • What Can I Expect From the First Session? In our initial meeting, my goal is to get to know you as an unique individual. I will ask you a series of focused questions to determine the symptoms of ADHD that you are experiencing, as well as the areas of functioning that have been most impacted by these symptoms. Together, we will discuss your childhood history, your past and current academic performance, as well as your workplace, personal, social relationships and issues. All of this will give me an in-depth picture of who you are as an individual, and will provide valuable insight into how your ADHD is impacting your life.
    Parents seeking assessment for their children and adolescents are asked to provide, as relevant, copies of school report cards, IPPs (Individual Program Plans), letters from teachers, doctors, therapists, or any previous ability testing that has been done.
  • Why Seek Diagnosis and Treatment? ADHD is largely undiagnosed in adults. This is unfortunate because ADHD is considered the most easily-treated disorder in Canada. Since ADHD impacts all areas of an individual’s life, receiving a diagnosis and support can make an incredible difference in life, relationships, job satisfaction, personal focus and productivity. For children, receiving a diagnosis means valuable support that will help them focus in school, connect with their peers, and harness their unique potential both now and in the future.
    An official ADHD diagnosis could assist many individuals qualify for funding for special needs, both inside and outside of the school system.
    My goal is that clients leave sessions with a rich and thorough understanding of who they are, how their ADHD is impacting their lives, work, studies, and relationships, and - most importantly - what this all means for them in terms of moving forward. Depending on why individuals are seeking an official ADHD assessment, they will leave with either a formal or summary report, verbal feedback (where a formal report is not necessary), and/or a referral letter.
  • What is the Best Way to Manage ADHD? There are many options for managing ADHD. Individuals with undiagnosed ADHD often consciously or unconsciously develop habits or skills to help them cope with their symptoms and compensate for them. These ‘workarounds’ can compensate for or mask symptoms for a time, but are typically not very effective and can actually block progress. The goal is not to merely cope, but to thrive and to grow. Together, we will discuss a muli-treatment plan and choose the options that best fit your unique symptoms and needs.
    Treatment plans may involve medication, counselling (individual, couples or family), cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), mindfulness therapy, cognitive therapy, neurofeedback or neurotherapy, behavior modification, ADHD Coaching or alternative therapies. Based on the results of your assessment, we will comb through the various options and discuss therapies, treatments and/or medications so you may make an informed decision in going forward.
  • Can I Treat ADHD Without Medication? While ADHD medication may be essential for most people, this need not always be the case. Our assessments will provide us with valuable information regarding the nature and complexity of your ADHD, so we can tailor a holistic and multi-disciplinary ADHD treatment plan.
  • Do you Prescribe Medication? I do not prescribe medication. If medication is necessary, I will refer you to a to a physician or a pediatrician who specializes in ADHD, a psychiatrist or a neurologist who can perform the appropriate medical assessment for prescription. You may consider consulting a physician about the possibility of trying medication. During the prescription process, your doctor will typically use the results from the ADHD assessment and take into account any other conditions you may have.
  • What jobs or careers are there that suit ADHD? For those with ADHD, workplace success is all about finding the right job. This will be a position in which individuals can harness their ADHD tendencies and use them to succeed. The good news is that almost every ‘negative’ symptom of ADHD can be harnessed and turned into a positive trait in the workplace.

    For example:
    — those with hyperactivity can choose to utilize this energy and channel it into drive, high engagement, and charisma.
    — those struggling with the tendency to hyperfocus can pour this into a project that requires full attention, innovation and focus.
    — many successful entrepreneurs have ADHD, and this is often an asset to them.

    Some of the best jobs and ADHD careers are found in working retail, working nightshifts, inventors, politicians, lawyers, emergency responders, comedians, pilots, police work, social work, entertainers and all manner of other high profile people have strong ADD (ADHD) characteristics. People with ADHD will excel in those jobs that are challenging, while their focus level will likely decline with jobs that is less interesting. Other things to consider include knowing what you love to do, what you are good at and what someone will pay you to do.
  • How Can I Support My Relationships Affected by ADHD? Individuals with ADHD often struggle in social settings and close relationships. Because they have a hard time paying attention, they can be perceived as uncaring, uninterested, or insincere. ADHD also causes problems with emotional regulation, and this can cause problems in relationships. Lack of impulse control can also be an issue, and this can pose problems in committed marital or dating relationships. However, with support and self-management skills, both children and adults with ADHD can thrive in their relationships. With the right treatment plan, as well as self-awareness and self-management skills, relationships can be satisfying, intimate, and committed. If a relationship has been affected, counselling is a wonderful way to focus on problematic issues, validate the other person, and bring the relationship back into harmony.
  • See more Frequently Asked Questions Here.

Location

In order to best serve a wide range of clients, I practice from my home office in Bragg Creek on Mondays and Wednesdays from 10am-5pm and in my Calgary office Tuesdays and Thursdays from 9am-4pm.

Alternatively, you can call or text me at (403) 510-9984 or email me at info@wehcs.com.

Reach out Today

If you are wondering whether you meet the criteria for an official diagnosis of ADHD, and if you would like to start living to your full potential, reach out today. I will meet you where you are at and come alongside you to help you move forward and reach your goals. I focus on your unique needs and provide access to a wide variety of resources. When necessary, I also refer clients to other professionals, including counsellors, pediatricians, family doctors, occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, behavioural optometrists, and tutors. Begin harnessing your full potential -- contact us today!