Spills happen. But for some reason, spills, mistakes, blunders, snafus, mess-ups, do-overs and screw-ups happen more to adults with ADD and with greater consequences. Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) can be very debilitating disorders if not carefully managed and supported.
If not diagnosed and treated, an adult with ADD can accumulate years of failure, missed opportunities, damaged self-esteem and possible drug and alcohol abuse. Careers, work and home life can suffer greatly. Fortunately, there are answers. We provide a comprehensive holistic approach to managing and overcoming ADD in adults.
The first step before treatment can begin is to get accurately assessed and tested for Adult ADD. We provide a comprehensive assessment for Adult ADD at the Sachs Center. Learn more about our Adult ADD testing.
Adult ADD/ADHD Treatment
Once a comprehensive ADD evaluation has been completed, treatment can begin. If you choose to pursue treatment at the Sachs Center, you will meet with our ADD/ADHD specialist to begin formulating a plan to manage your symptoms.
Dr. Sachs has developed a unique holistic protocol for managing and treating symptoms of ADD in adults. This model involves both psychoeducation, individual therapy and medication if warranted. For those individuals that do not want to take medication, Neurofeedback can be explored.
The Sachs Protocol
The Sachs Protocol utilizes 15 psycheducational steps, each building on the next to improve overall functioning. This is combined with individual or group therapy.
Often a doctor will treat an infection with a “topical” superficial cream. Sometimes an antibiotic is prescribed; internal and working on a deeper level. The Sachs protocol uses both; a superficial psychoeducational approach and a deeper more psychological method. These occur together in the once a week session with your Sachs Center therapist.
The therapist will support the client as they move forward on the 15 steps, offering suggestions and external resources. The therapist, through traditional talk therapy, will also help the client remove roadblocks to change and manage deeper emotional issues that stand in the way of growth.
The 15 Steps
One: Externalize the Motivation
- Admitting you have a problem and understanding that external support is necessary to complete the 15 steps.
- Understanding that isolation or “doing it all by yourself” will not work.
Two: Survival Mode
- Understanding that ADHD creates chaos in one’s life and that forces you to be on “survival mode” all the time.
- Survival mode leads to unintentional selfishness.
Three: Taking Care of Oneself
- Learning that the behaviors that brought you to us have not been based on self-love, but rather on survival.
- Developing an appreciation that your body needs to be cared for and not pushed to the limits.
Four: Proactive V. Reactive
- Realizing that if you have ADHD, you’re always behind the eight-ball of life; always reacting as opposed to being pro-active.
- This step simply requires one to accept that always putting out fires is less enjoyable that one where you’re taking control of your life.
After increasing personal motivation for change, the next few steps teach the importance of the brain-body and brain-gut connection and how important it is to properly fuel, clean and rest the engine.
- Hydrating more often help cleanse the body of toxins and improve cognitive functioning.
- Clients are encouraged to buy a water filter or have water home-delivered.
- Many clients with ADD have difficulty getting to bed on time and thus fail to get eight hours of sleep a night.
- Clients will be coached on developing better sleep hygiene, learning to “take care of themselves” by getting to bed earlier and shutting down electronics earlier.
- Exercise has been proven effective at improving cognitive functioning.
- Clients will be encouraged to externalize the motivation (or lack of motivation to exercise) by joining a walking/running/exercise club. Or hiring a trainer. Or finding a friend to work out with.
- Reducing or eliminating sugar, increasing fats and protein have shown to be effective in improving cognitive functioning and improve ‘willpower”.
- Clients will be encouraged to read “Sugar Blues,” “Sugar Busters,” “The Zone Diet” and books on the Paleo approach.
After learning about how to properly fuel the body to support optimal brain functioning, clients will begin to focus on the hardest challenges for those with ADD.
Nine: Time Management
- Clients will learn about “one-more-thing-itis,” which may prevent them from leaving their home on time.
- Clients will learn that being late has a unspoken impact on the relationship with the individual waiting. The loss of trust and lack of accountability will be explored.
Ten: Personal Organization
- Using David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” model of organization, clients will be supported in developing a simple model of personal organization.
- Simple apps and smartphone hacks will be offered.
Eleven: Financial Organization
- Financial problems are common to those with ADHD.
- Clients will be coached on developing a savings plan and improving their credit score. Once again, externalizing the process by hiring a financial coach or advisor will be encouraged.
Step Eleven: Accountability
- Accountability is the hardest challenge for individuals with ADHD.
- Clients will learn what it means to be accountable in ones life and to feel the benefits of being a person who others can count on.
Step Twelve: Meditation
- Impulsivity is the hallmark of Adult ADHD.
- Clients will learn about meditation and begin to develop a practice that serves to reduce impulsivity and create more groundedness.
Step Thirteen: Community
- Once the client learns about accountability and feels an elevation of self esteem, joining a community becomes more possible.
- With community support, continued spiritual, emotional and physical growth can occur.
Step Fourteen: Service
- Once the client gains mastery of themselves and develops personal accountability, they can start to give back to others.
- The joy in giving to others will help the client move from survival-mode to thriving-mode.
- The client will also learn that they are valued and cherished by others.
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