ADD and ADHD Testing, Diagnosis and Treatment Effectiveness Review Toronto & Across Ontario

Could it be ADD or ADHD?

Have you ever wondered if you or a member of your family has ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) or ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder)?

People with ADD and ADHD share a common story; they are smart, and have goals and dreams, but aren’t doing as well as they could at school or on the job. They share other things in common too—like hurtful comments from people who see them as misbehaving, lazy or unmotivated.

You know these comments are unfair—and untrue. But what should you do?

It’s important to figure out whether ADD or ADHD can explain the challenges you are seeing, especially since treatments for ADD and ADHD can be incredibly effective. Help is available, and science shows that specific treatments can make a big difference!

Here are answers to questions we are often asked about assessing ADD and ADHD at the Possibilities Clinic.

What is ADD/ADHD?
You might have heard that ADD and ADHD aren’t “real” disorders. Well science says, that’s wrong!

ADHD is a real, physical, neurobiological brain difference. Thousands of scientific studies have proven that fact, so don’t let anyone tell you otherwise!

Attention deficit disorders can look different in different people. Difficulty with focusing is a common theme, but some individuals are more hyperactive and impulsive, while others tend to daydream.

Do I have ADD or ADHD? Does my child have ADD or ADHD?
A detailed assessment of attention can help you figure that out. And no, this is not something you need to figure out on your own. We can help! We’ve assessed thousands of children, teens and adults at the Possibilities Clinic. We specialize in testing and treating ADD and ADHD—so we know the best practices and strategies for success that can support a brighter future for you or your child.

    Is diagnosing ADD or ADHD hard to do?
    Yes. Diagnosing ADD and ADHD is complicated. No person with ADD or ADHD is alike. And symptoms that look like ADD or ADHD might not signal an Attention Disorder. Figuring out what’s going on takes time, detailed investigation, and expert knowledge. Bottom line: Diagnosing ADD and ADHD can’t be done with a simple checklist. It can’t be done in 15 minutes.
    Does that mean treating ADD and ADHD is complicated too?
    Yes, treating ADD and ADHD is complicated.

    There are many medication and non-medication options out there. Some have scientific support and others don’t. How do you know what’s right for you or your family? How do you know what’s going to make real change happen? We’ll devise a Treatment Plan that helps you achieve bigger goals and better outcomes. And we’ll only offer treatments that are supported by science.

    What do ADD/ADHD Assessments look like at the Possibilities Clinic?
    At the Possibilities Clinic we offer a Comprehensive Assessment for ADD/ADHD that looks at more than just attention. We take a detailed medical and developmental history to see how long you or your family member has experienced these difficulties. Questionnaire ratings—from people you give us permission to contact like teachers, coworkers or other family members—help offer more information about challenges in different settings and situations. But beyond that we also do direct testing of attention and cognitive functioning to assess brain functioning. Once problem areas are identified, our team can recommend targeted and scientifically supported treatments.
    How are your ADD/ADHD Assessments different than others?
    At the Possibilities Clinic we approach assessments from a unique team perspective. That means we involve experts from multiple health fields—like psychology and medicine—in every single assessment that we do, including assessments of attention. A team approach to ADHD—where psychology expertise is added to physician intake—makes our assessments of attention unique.

    Our team expertise allows for a comprehensive examination of a full range of abilities, from Attention Deficit Disorders to mental health concerns like anxiety, depression, and learning challenges.

    Since we examine a range of issues associated with attention, we call our approach the Comprehensive Multidisciplinary ADHD Assessment.

    At what age should I consider obtaining an ADD/ADHD assessment for either myself or my child?
    Early intervention always works best!

    However, it’s never too late. Interventions continue to be effective in high school, university, and into adulthood. We’ve seen thousands of preschoolers, college students, and seniors. At any age, good outcomes can happen with the right Treatment Plan.

    Will the assessment help us develop the right Treatment Plan?
    Yes! But recommendations can’t be general, and they can’t be vague. Recommendations must be targeted, specific, and supported by science. And they must be personalized for you. For example:

    • For the college student moving away from home, we can request a single residence room if we have concerns about poor sleep and high distractibility.
    • For students who struggle to get work done, we can offer programs like ADHD Coaching or individual therapy.
    • For the person requiring medication support, we can find the right medication at the right dose.

    At The Possibilities Clinic, our team works with you to coordinate medication and non-medication treatments in one clinic.

    How much does the ADHD/ADD Assessment cost?
    The cost for our Comprehensive Multidisciplinary ADHD Assessment is $1950. This cost is often covered by private insurance plans. Post-secondary students may be eligible for an OSAP bursary that covers a portion of the assessment cost.
    I don’t live in Toronto, do I need to come into the city for the assessment?
    No! We are excited to announce that our assessments are now available throughout Ontario over video. We can also conduct direct testing of attention and cognitive functioning over the internet. If you have a computer and a high-speed internet connection, all your appointments and testing can be done from the comfort of your home. In fact, during the COVID-19 situation, all assessment and therapy sessions offered at the clinic are presently being conducted through secure video.
    I don’t live in Ontario, can I still be tested for ADHD remotely?
    Unfortunately, at this time, all our physicians and psychologists are only licensed to see people in Ontario. If you live anywhere in Ontario, you can be accessed remotely. If you do not live in Ontario, you or your child can still be assessed but you will need to come down to our central Toronto office. We may be able to change this in the future, so stay tuned!
    Do I need a doctor’s referral to start the assessment?
    Yes. A specialized physician is involved in all of our team ADHD assessments, so a doctor’s referral is required. If you are not seeking an assessment, but wish to proceed directly with therapy or coaching, a doctor’s referral is not required.

    What if I’ve already had an ADHD assessment at another clinic and just want to see your physicians for a medication consultation?
    If you have received an ADHD assessment elsewhere, your doctor can obtain advice about ADHD medication from our medical experts using an eConsult on the OTN platform. Talk to your doctor about this eConsult option. This doctor-to-doctor e-consultation is fully covered by OHIP. To be eligible for this service, the ADHD assessment you received elsewhere must meet the same high standards of diagnostic investigation that define the assessments we conduct at Possibilities. We request that your ADHD diagnosis be derived from a Psychoeducational Assessment or a comprehensive ADHD Assessment that includes data from direct testing, relevant information derived from detailed clinical interviews, and ratings from standardized, norm-referenced questionnaires. These diagnostic assessments must be relatively current, and not more than 3 years old. Since we will base our eConsult with your doctor on this previous assessment, you will not be seen directly by our physicians. Instead we will advise your physician on potential medication use based on the information garnered from the assessment you received elsewhere.

    What if I’ve already had an ADHD Assessment at another clinic but I want to start from scratch or get a second opinion? Can I still be seen at your clinic?
    No problem! We can see you or your family member as usual! You or your child would have access to our complete Assessment Team through our Comprehensive Multidisciplinary ADHD Assessment. As part of that assessment, you will meet with a psychiatrist directly to discuss various treatment options, including medication. The physician on your ADHD Assessment Team would then consult with your doctor about the ADHD medications that are best for you or your child based on all the information our Assessment Team collects. You will also be advised on additional treatment options like coaching and therapy to maximize success. Providing us with results from your previous ADHD assessment can be useful in our information gathering. However, because our assessments are comprehensive and involve extensive data collection—including direct testing of attention—our team of experts from psychology, psychometry and medicine will not be swayed by previous assessment results in a way that decreases our accuracy in making the right diagnosis. 

    How do I start the ADHD Assessment?
    Fill out the intake forms on our website at https://possibilitiesclinic.com/age-3-17/ for children and https://possibilitiesclinic.com/age-18/ for adults. Once we have this form and the physician referral, our team will call you to set up an appointment.

    For any questions, email us at info@possibilitiesclinic.com or call 1-833-482-5558 to speak with one of our Care Coordinators.