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A Step-by-Step Guide to Preparing for Your ADHD Assessment

Here are some steps you can take to ensure that you feel prepared for your ADHD assessment.

You may experience a range of emotions before your ADHD assessment. Commonly experienced emotions include feeling worried about what the assessment will entail; feeling hopeful that the assessment will provide you with answers; feeling nervous about the appointment, or even feeling frustrated that you have to go through an assessment process. It is important to remember that everyone's experience is unique, and there is no right or wrong way to feel before an ADHD assessment. To support you with this process, here are some steps you can take to ensure that you feel prepared for your ADHD assessment.

1. Gather information about your symptoms: Try to identify the specific symptoms you are experiencing and how they are affecting your daily life. This can be helpful before your assessment to ensure that you are able to recall the key points you would like to raise. If you have any previous assessments or records that you think may be relevant to the assessment, you can have this to hand before the appointment and discuss this with your clinician during the ADHD assessment. These can help your clinician to get a better understanding of your history and experiences. As ADHD is a neurodevelopmental condition, childhood records (such as school reports) can provide additional information that can aid the assessment process.

2. Complete any required forms: Before the assessment, you may be asked to complete a series of questionnaires or forms that enable you to consider your experience with ADHD symptoms and their impact on your life. Make sure you fill these out thoroughly and accurately. There are no right or wrong answers and these questionnaires are designed to provide a starting point for the discussions within your appointment.

3. Get a good night's sleep: Try to get a good night's sleep before your assessment. You may experience a range of emotions on the day/in the period after your ADHD assessment. Getting a good night’s sleep before your appointment can help you to ensure that you are well-rested for the appointment.

4. Bring a support person: Consider bringing a trusted family member, partner, or long-term friend to the appointment with you if you think this would be helpful for your personal circumstance. They can provide emotional support and help you remember important information.

Further, the provision of collateral information is necessary for a diagnostic assessment of ADHD. Collateral information in ADHD assessments refers to information gathered from sources other than the individual being assessed. This collateral information is important in the assessment of ADHD because it can provide additional perspectives on your behaviour, symptoms, and how you function in various settings. The information provided by collateral sources and informants is an important part of the ADHD assessment process, as it helps to ensure that the assessment is comprehensive and accurate.

5. Prepare for questions: Be prepared to answer questions about your childhood development, your clinical history, your family history, and your current difficulties. Think about how to describe your symptoms in detail and be honest about any concerns you may have.

Finally, be open to the assessment process. Remember, the assessment is designed to explore your areas of concern, better understand your symptoms and identify any appropriate support.

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