The ADHD Advantage?
- Friday, August 18, 2006
My son isn’t the only family member who has ADHD – he got it from me. I have significant ADHD and have taken medication for years, which increase my ability to concentrate and focus. For much of my life, I "toughed it out" with no medication. But when I really thought and prayed about it, I decided that if I can take better care of my patients by having significantly improved focus and concentration, then I could better use the education and talents God gave me.
Having been in medical practice now for over 30 years, I can arrange my schedule to my satisfaction and still have the freedom to write, do public speaking, participate in radio and TV programs, etc. I can multitask to my heart’s content, creating music, working on special projects, and writing books (seventy-one to date!). I have also written many articles for many magazines, such as this one. If it weren’t for my ADHD multitasking personality, I might not have been able to accomplish many of these things. Finding ways to work with my ADHD, instead of against it, has enabled me to more successfully serve Christ and mankind.
Ways You can Help Your ADHD Work to Your Advantage
Some people with milder ADD only need education and counseling to learn coping skills, so don't feel pressured to start filling prescriptions for your child upon an initial diagnosis. Others benefit from vitamins with essential amino acids like phenylalanine to give their brain food. But many, like myself, do benefit from ADHD meds.
Some current medications thought to probably help ADD, whether approved for that purpose or not, are: Provigil, Wellbutrin-XL, Effexor-XR, Cymbalta, Strattera, and the Stimulants, such as Ritalin or Adderal. Although we may be hesitant to put ourselves or our children on medications, be open to God’s leading. For some, medication is not the answer, but for others, finding the right medication can be God’s answer to prayer in your life.
When children with ADHD receive proper treatment, we see the hidden advantages flourish. With the right combination of medications, vitamins and counseling we see that trademark energy and compulsivity motivate lots of people to create new businesses and to diversify their daily routine. Finding ways to work with a child’s strengths and weaknesses can result in great financial and creative success, which in turn can help them feel fulfilled and serve more effectively.
And this isn’t limited to ADHD. Whatever trials your family may be experiencing, God can and will work through them for your benefit and His glory.
"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." (2 Cor 12:9)
Adapted from Blue Genes (Tyndale House Publishers) by Paul Meier, M.D., Todd Clements, M.D., Jean-Luc Bertrand, and David Mandt, Sr. M.A. Copyright 2005. www.meierclinics.org.
D r. Paul Meier is a pioneer in the integration of the genetic, psychological and spiritual nature of man, with advanced degrees in Human Physiology (Michigan State University), Medicine (The University of Arkansas Medical School), Psychiatry (Duke University Medical School), and biblical studies (begun at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School and completed at Dallas Theological Seminary). Dr. Meier has practiced psychiatry for over thirty years and has written over seventy books including Love is a Choice. Meier has also taught at Trinity and at Dallas Theological Seminary for twelve years. Currently Dr. Meier practices at the Meier Clinic in Dallas, TX.
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