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Treating ADHD in Teens

BNI Treatment Centers: ADHD Treatment for Teens

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the best-known of all childhood behavioral conditions. It gets its name from the broad range of symptoms it can produce in any affected person. While ADHD is often associated with early childhood, it also affects younger and older teenagers. No form of treatment will completely halt the effects of the disorder. However, the right forms of support can help your teen regain function and daily stability. 

Looking for a behavioral health program that treats ADHD in teenagers? Call on BNI Treatment Centers. We specialize in residential and outpatient treatment for teen behavioral health issues. No matter how seriously your child is affected, we provide customized solutions designed to support their recovery. We’re committed to helping teenagers with ADHD find effective ways to reintegrate back into their daily routines. 

BNI Treatment Centers is a teen mental health treatment center for those in need. Contact us today to learn more about our Los Angeles mental health treatment center.

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BNI Treatment offers your teen a path forward.
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Parent & Family Support

At our mental health treatment center for teens, we understand how difficult this time is for the parents and families of a struggling teen. Our therapeutic and clinical team will provide therapeutic support and guidance for the family unit during the entire process.


Understanding ADHD in Teenagers

Almost 10% of all American children and teenagers are affected by ADHD. That’s the equivalent of roughly six million people. Preteens and teenagers account for more than half of all those who receive an ADHD diagnosis at this stage of life. Children ages six to 11 make up the next largest group. Approximately a quarter million three-to-five-year-olds are also affected. 

There are two main subtypes of ADHD. Some children and teens are mostly affected by symptoms of inattention. Such symptoms may include:

  • Difficulty paying attention to details or focusing on tasks
  • Problems following instructions
  • Dislike or avoidance of tasks that require sustained mental effort
  • A seeming inability to listen to others during direct conversations
  • Difficulty getting or staying organized
  • A tendency toward easy distraction
  • Frequent forgetfulness

Others are more affected by symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity. Examples of symptoms in these categories include:

  • Excessive talking
  • Restlessness or difficulty remaining seated in appropriate situations
  • Frequent fidgeting or similar body movements
  • A tendency to interrupt others or intrude on their activities
  • An inability to engage in quiet forms of play or activity
  • Difficulty waiting in turn-based situations

In addition, some children and teenagers have mixed symptoms from both subtypes. Hyperactivity and impulsivity tend to affect younger children more often than they affect teens. In turn, adolescents are more likely to have symptoms related to inattention.

A teen talks to a therapist during a therapy session.
What to know about ADHD

The Difference in ADHD Diagnoses for Younger and Older Teenagers

All people with ADHD must have a certain number of symptoms before qualifying for a formal diagnosis. They must also:

  • Have those symptoms for at least half a year
  • Experience problems that don’t typically affect people of their developmental age

However, there is a significant difference in the ADHD criteria for teens above and below the age of 17. Teenagers 16 or younger must have a total of at least six symptoms. In contrast, those 17 or older only need to have five or more symptoms. The same lowered threshold also applies to adults with ADHD. 

Have more questions about the basics of ADHD? Get them answered today at BNI Treatment Centers.

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    ADHD and Residential Treatment at BNI

    The effects of ADHD may be characterized by a doctor as mild, moderate, or severe. Children and teens with mild ADHD typically just meet the minimum standard for making an official diagnosis. In addition, they remain mostly functional in daily life. Moderate ADHD is diagnosed when:

    • More symptoms occur or daily dysfunction increases 
    • The disorder’s impact is greater than in mild cases, but not serious enough to qualify as severe

    Children and teens with severe ADHD may be affected in any of several ways. In some cases, they have an unusually large number of total symptoms. In others, specific symptoms have an unusually serious functional impact. Severely affected people may also experience both issues. In other words, they may have larger numbers of unusually serious symptoms. 

    AT BNI, we can typically address mild and moderate ADHD in one of our advanced outpatient options:

    • Intensive outpatient program (IOP)
    • Partial hospitalization program (PHP)

     However, your child may need our residential program to address severe ADHD. That’s true because this program provides the extra time and attention needed to recover from serious dysfunction.

    Want more information on ADHD severity and how we determine appropriate treatment settings? Consult the professionals at BNI Treatment Centers today.

    We work with most major insurance
    Most major health insurance plans will help cover up to 100% of the cost of treatment at our program. Find out your teen's coverage & treatment options right now.

    We Currently DO NOT Accept Medi-Cal, Medicare, IEHP, Kaiser or Government state/county funded health insurance.

    ADHD Treatment for Teens – What Are the Available Options?


    Medication is one of the most important options for teenagers affected by ADHD. In most cases, our medication of choice is a stimulant such as amphetamine or methylphenidate. That’s true, in part, because stimulants provide symptom relief roughly 75% of the time. Medications in this category also tend to work relatively rapidly. However, your teen may also benefit from a non-stimulant option like atomoxetine. 


    Several types of therapy are also known to provide a benefit for teen treatment for ADHD. The list of options available to your child at BNI include:

    • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) that focuses on improving concentration and attentiveness 
    • Other behavioral therapies that make it easier to stay organized, complete important tasks, or interact socially
    • Family therapy that helps you resolve family conflicts and improve your interactions with your child

    To find out more about the options we use for ADHD treatment for teens, talk to us today.

    The Importance of Parental Support and Involvement

    Parental support and involvement are always important for teens getting help for ADHD. That includes active parental participation in any form of therapy your child receives. It also includes such things as:

    • Educating yourself about ADHD and its potential effects
    • Helping your child achieve specific goals as part of their treatment plan
    • Remaining generally supportive of your child’s recovery efforts

    Your teen’s treatment team can fill you in on the best ways to stay actively involved. They can also help guide your daily efforts to support your child. Contact the specialists at BNI Treatment Centers for more information.


    Seek ADHD Treatment for Teens at BNI Treatment Centers

    Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder is both common and potentially highly disruptive. Once present, it cannot be cured. However, with effective treatment, any teenager can overcome ADHD-related distress and dysfunction. That treatment may take place in any of several outpatient programs. However, recovery from severe ADHD often occurs in a residential program.

    At BNI Treatment Centers, we feature residential services for teenagers affected by ADHD. We also feature two forms of advanced outpatient ADHD treatment for teens. What’s more, we can address any drug or alcohol problems that occur at the same time as ADHD. With our help, your child can start restoring daily function and well-being. They can also develop long-term strategies for maintaining restored function. All treatment plans at BNI are fully customized to fit each teen’s unique needs. 

    For more details on any of our three locations, contact us today via phone, email, or our online message form. We’re standing by to guide you through the admissions and treatment process.


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    Fill in the form below to schedule a free consultation with our admissions team. We work with most major insurance providers to help cover the costs associated with treatment. We do not accept Medi-Cal, Medicaid, or Medicare plans at this time.