ADHD ADD Learning Disability Test Assessment and Treatment Q&A

Human Brain

We get many questions from people on these topics, so we decided for the benefit of everyone to also post them on  our website.

For those new to our website, the ACE clinic (ACE stands for Advanced Cognitive Enhancement) has been in the current address in North York for over 25 years with focusing on ADHD tests, ADHD assessment and Treatment. We specialize in assessing and treating ADHD, ADD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), a variety of learning disabilities such as dyslexia, dysgraphia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia as well as autism, Asperger’s, sensory processing disorder, sensory integration disorder, executive function disorder, auditory processing disorder, language disorder and a variety of other attention and memory disorders.

We use modalities such as biofeedback, neurofeedback, and a highly specialized (patented) neuro cognitive training that corrects the problem at its core. When required CBT (cognitive behavioural therapy is also used),

Our assessment process includes an EEG and a skills assessment, which points out to he exact deficiencies. The results of this assessment help us in creating a treatment program that caters to these specific deficiencies.

The treatment can be done at the clinic or at home under our supervision, and we are proud to offer one of the highest rates of success in this field.

Please feel free to browse our website to learn in more detail about what we do.

If you have a question for us, please email it to us via our contact form.

And now for the  questions:

Raymond from Victoria, BC asks:

Q. What is the difference between general brain training and what you do at your clinic in relation to ADHD and learning disability (in my particular case dyslexia)?

A. Good question, Raymond. Brain Training might be good to keep your brain in shape like you would exercise to keep your body in good shape. However, when it comes to ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) and learning disabilities, you need to understand that the brain of an ADHD (and LD) person is wired differently. To be able to correct the problem a very complex rewiring process has to take place. Most Brain Training program cannot do that. Our neuro-cognitive training program which is based on advanced neuroplasticity principles was designed to do exactly that: train the brain to function the way it was originally designed without the limitations imposed by the ADHD or ADD condition (the two are now combined into ADHD which is divided to three types – you can read about the three types of ADHD here). The same goes for learning disabilities and other conditions mentioned above.

Combined with cognitive skills building (such as visual processing, auditory processing, divided attention, multi-tasking, working memory, etc) the brain is now able to process things much more effectively.

Laura from Toronto, ON asks:

Q. What kind of natural remedies help in resolving ADHD symptoms?

A. Unfortunately, there is no natural remedy, or vitamins, or homeopathic formulas that can resolve ADHD symptoms. While some can help alleviate aspects of ADHD like restlessness, inability to fall asleep and similar, there is no remedy that can actually correct the problem. The reason being is that ADHD is fundamentally a neuro-cognitive problem. As mentioned in a previous reply, the brain is not fully wired properly. As a result, only a neuro-cognitive approach can address the problems correctly. So, if someone can’t focus well because they are tired related to lack of sleep, a remedy that can help improve sleep. But in the area of ADHD and learning disability, the inability to focus and process well is a primary and not a secondary problem, therefore it has to be addressed accordingly.

Terry from Mississauga, ON asks:

Q. What is a difference between ADHD and ADD in adults?

A. In the old days, physicians differentiated the two conditions based on whether or not symptoms of hyperactivity existed. The “H” in ADHD represented Hyperactivity.  Nowadays, there is only one diagnosis, which is ADHD, but there are 3 subtypes related to this condition: Inattention, hyperactivity/impulsivity and the combined type.

Symptoms of inattention typically found in adults include:

inability to sustain attention, distractibility, procrastination, starting and completing tasks, organization-related problems, poor listening.

Symptoms of hyperactivity/impulsivity include:

Fidgeting, impatience, anxious, impulsive, restlessness, excessive talking.

To read more about adult ADHD click here.

Liz from Toronto, ON asks:

Q. Can brain game help resolve ADHD related problems.

A. No they cannot. Brain games may be good for challenging your brain to some degree, but they do not rewire the brain to overcome the typical neurology of an ADHD (and for that matter also an LD – learning disability) brain. To be able to rewire the brain and bypass the difficulties associated with ADHD, a specialized neuro-cognitive training program is required. It should incorporate three important elements:

1. Neurofeedback

2. Cognitive skills training

3. Working memory training

You can read more on brain training here.

John from Peterborough, ON asks:

Q. What is biofeedback and how is it different from neurofeedback?

A. Neurofeedback is also a form of neurofeedback. However, while biofeedback focuses mainly on the autonomic nervous system, neurofeedback focuses mainly on the central nervous system. Biofeedback has been proven to be very useful for chronic conditions such as chronic stress, anxiety, insomnia and chronic pain, while neurofeedback has proven to work well with issues of focus, concertation and attention. Neurofeedback can help children with ADHD and/or a learning disability and also adults with ADHD and/or a learning disability. There are also protocols to help with anxiety and depression. We, at the clinic, also successfully treated not only ADHD and different types of learning disabilities but also other cognitive deficiencies related to head injury and post-concussion, autism spectrum disorders, memory disorders, executive function disorders and more, using a variety of treatment protocols such as biofeedback, neurofeedback, neuro-cognitive training, stress and anxiety management.

Rachel from Ottawa, ON asks:  

Q. My ADHD son (University student) is taking Adderall. If he starts your treatment, should he stop taking it?

A. No. Your son can continue using Adderall to help with his studies. However,  it is recommended to do our training for ADHD just before taking the Adderall. Right now it is used as sort of  a crutch to help your son cope. Typically, within 3-5 months most individuals doing the training stop taking any stimulant medication because their brain begins to function normally and they can focus and process properly. We can verify that when we do the assessment for his ADHD and see if his brain responds well to our program. We only recommend our training program if the result of this test is positive. Treating ADHD (and other learning disabilities) in children and adults requires sort of rewiring of the frontal lobes, and we can test how responsive the brain is going to be for this very powerful (and completely free of side effects) type of neuro-cognitive training.

You can read more about the conditions we treat by clicking here.

Linda from Edmonton, AB asks:

What’s the best ADHD test? Is there a blood test for ADHD?

Unfortunately, there is no blood test, nor is there an x-ray or any other medical procedure that can test for ADHD. ADHD tests are done through interviews and professional assessments. Psychiatrists typically will ask questions, during a clinical interview, to see if a person matches the DSM V criteria for ADHD (see more information about diagnosing ADHD here). Another option to test for ADHD is to undergo a psycho-educational assessment that can point to the presence of the condition. We at the clinic perform a neuro-cognitive assessment – a very advanced assessment that will point out areas of cognitive weaknesses. While the first two ADHD tests will lead to a diagnosis with optional recommendations for the stimulant medication (prescribed by a physician) the neuro-cognitive assessment leads to successful treatment by resolving the root core of the problem.

read more about our 6 step assessment process here

Samuel from Jacksonville, Florida asks:

Q. Can SPD be treated successfully?

A. SPD stands for Sensory Processing (integration) Disorder and is a neurological condition caused by the inability of the brain to organize and properly interpret information acquired through the senses (which include: touch, smell, hearing, sight, and taste). It can also affect movement coordination and spatial orientation. It creates a state of disorganization as a result of the brain’s inability to sort out sensory information correctly, which can create feelings of being very overwhelmed for those suffering from the condition.

We, here at the ACE clinic, have successfully treated individuals suffering from SPD by using a neuro-cognitive training program developed at the clinic. We generally specialize in assessing and treating attention deficit disorders (ADD/ADHD), learning disabilities, memory disorders, executive function disorders,  as well as ASD (autism spectrum disorder) and SPD.

This highly specialized program trains the frontal region as well as other parts of the brain to better sort and organizes sensory-based information which will result in a significant reduction of stress/anxiety and improved processing and learning. Not everyone is suitable for the program and we assess the suitability during the assessment process.

Mark from Toronto, ON asks:

Q. I consider myself very creative and I also suffer from ADHD. Will your program fix my brain on the one hand but affect my creativity on the other?

A. Excellent question Mark. No, it will not. These two sets of mental abilities are separate. A person can be creative and very focused and organized at the same time. What our training program does is adding more tools to your mental toolbox. You will still have your old tools to use anytime you want, but you will also have new tools to be able to do things you couldn’t or were difficult to do before, like better focus and concentration, improved memory and improved executive functions (like organization, time management, starting and completing tasks, prioritizing, motivation and so on). In addition, you will feel much calmer, less anxious and less hyper if that’s one of your symptoms.

You can read more about SPD here

You can read more about our SPD assessment and treatment process here

Kevin from Victoria, BC asks:

Q. Can I train from home or do I need to come to your clinic for that?

A. Yes, Kevin, you can train from home. Up until only a few years ago, you had to come to the clinic to do our specialized training. To be able to treat people from other territories, we developed a powerful training program that can help individuals suffering from ADHD as well as all learning disabilities, or people who are suffering from a cognitive decline (focus, memory and executive functions), train at home under our supervision. After an initial assessment, that can be done either at the clinic or online, we will make specific recommendations in terms of what would be the most effective program suitable for your needs after which you will be able to start the training right away.

You can learn more about our treatments for ADHD, LD  here

Liz from Ottawa, ON asks:

Q. Further to a previous question can I do the assessment online so that I don’t have to drive to Toronto?

A. Yes, you can. We now offer a very thorough remote assessment that includes a 3 step process: a pre-assessment, followed by a neuro-cognitive assessment, followed by a clinical interview done via the Zoom platform. The entire process takes about 3 hours to complete and it’s done in three separate steps. During the clinical interview, the findings, as well as our recommendations, will be discussed in detail.

You can read more about our remote assessment here

Rose from Hamilton, ON asks:

Q. Do you also provide counselling and coaching regarding anger and anxiety? And if you do what methdds do you use? Can it be done remotely

A. We definitely do. In fact, we have been providing counseling sessions, coaching and therapy for over 30 years. As a result of this extensive experience working with people from all walks of life, we developed what we call “shortcut modalities” that significantly shorten therapy. We use a result oriented approach that helps us focus on how to arrive to the “destination” mutually agreed on in the fastest and least painful way. We work on a variety of issues including anger, anxiety, relationships, developing stronger selves, improving communication skills, identifying goals worthwhile pursuing, stress management and a lot more. You can read more about our counselling services here.

We do offer remote services using the phone or the zoom platform.

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