Researchers are discovering that integrated treatment can be beneficial for children who suffer from both ADHD and an anxiety disorder. Among children diagnosed with ADHD, nearly 25% of them also have diagnosable anxiety disorders. With the number of children suffering from both conditions being so high, researchers are developing treatments that tackle both at the same time. Discovering whether a behavior is being caused by the ADHD or the anxiety is an important first step for parents and clinicians to take, as some treatments for ADHD can worsen the symptoms of anxiety, as well as the reverse.
Researchers at the Department of Psychology at the University of Alabama have recently studied two modified approaches to treatment of co-occurring ADHD and anxiety disorders in children between the ages of 8 and 12. The children showed a statistically significant reduction in ADHD symptoms and short-term reductions in anxiety. Further study will need to be conducted on these treatment options, but they show promise for children suffering from these debilitating conditions.
The combination of ADHD and an anxiety disorder can be a frustrating and disabling experience for a child, but treatments are available for both conditions and there is hope for both the child and the parents.