Updated: Jan 12
In this article
What is ADHD?
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a disorder characterised by inattention and hyperactivity that affects a person’s function and development .
Typical symptoms of ADHD include wandering off tasks, difficulty in paying attention, moving around in inappropriate situations or fidgeting excessively.
ADHD is usually diagnosed in childhood and can affect the child’s development compared to his or her peers of the same age. As a result, the child may fall behind academically or struggle to form interpersonal relationships with others.
Read more to find out about ADHD treatments.
What are the types of ADHD treatments available?
Medications can reduce symptoms of ADHD and improve the functioning capability of the individual. Two types of medications are usually prescribed to people who suffer from ADHD – stimulants and non-stimulants.
Stimulants e.g. methylphenidate (Ritalin, Methylin) and amphetamine (Adderall).
Stimulants work by enhancing the transmission of norepinephrine and dopamine in the prefrontal cortex of the brain.  Dopamine is associated with pleasure, attention and movement. As such, stimulants can help the patient focus better and reduce hyperactive behaviours.
Non-stimulants e.g. atomoxetine (Strattera)
Non-stimulants such as Strattera work by inhibiting the reuptake of norepinephrine, resulting in increased concentrations of norepinephrine and dopamine in the prefrontal cortex of the brain. This helps the patient focus better and reduce hyperactive behaviours.
Psychotherapy can help patients suffering from ADHD manage their condition and improve their relationships with others.
Common psychotherapy methods used to treat ADHD include:
Cognitive behavioural therapy
CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy) is a type of psychotherapy that aims to help people recognize and modify problematic thought patterns that lead to unpleasant behaviors or feelings. CBT usually entails acquiring new skills, setting goals, and problem-solving. 
Family therapy is a sort of counseling that assists family members in improving communication and resolving disputes. These sessions also assist family members in strengthening their relationships and encouraging them to work through difficult times as a unit. 
Social skills training
Social skills training helps individuals with ADHD become less impulsive or aggressive as well as manage their anger. It can also help individuals with ADHD behave in a “socially acceptable” manner. 
Specific behavioural classroom management interventions
This helps to improve the behaviour of ADHD children and improve their relationship with their peers at school. This typically involves teacher implemented reward systems.
What is the breakdown of costs of ADHD treatments?
The costs of ADHD treatments can range from $40 to more than $800, depending on the severity of the condition.
This normally depends on a number of factors such as:
What is the difference in costs of ADHD treatments between public and private institutions?
Consultation or Diagnosis
$40 - $175
$300 - $600
Free - $182 per session
$180 - $200 per session
Are there subsidies available for ADHD treatments?
There are no subsidies available for ADHD treatments in Singapore. However, if you visit a general practitioner or a polyclinic and receive a referral letter to seek treatment at a public hospital, you can enjoy cheaper rates for consultation and diagnosis.
Are ADHD treatments Medisave claimable?
Unfortunately, ADHD treatments are not Medisave claimable as it is not covered under the Chronic Disease Management Programme.
Are there insurances that offer coverage for ADHD treatments?
Yes, there are insurances that offer coverage for ADHD treatments.
The AIA Pro Lifetime Protector with Child Critical Cover is an insurance that provides coverage for 25 child medical conditions which includes ADHD. This insurance plan covers children until the age of 21. 
What other factors should I consider apart from the costs?
Some factors that you may want to consider while choosing a therapist include :
Location of the clinic: As therapy usually takes months or even years, it can be time-consuming and inconvenient to travel to clinics or therapists that are far from your house.
Experience of therapist: Therapists who have more experience in treating patients with the same condition as you can provide some reassurances that he or she can help you get better.
Credentials of therapist: Ensure your therapist has relevant certifications and licenses to offer therapy services.
Comfort with therapist: As you will need to open up about certain topics, it is important to be comfortable with your therapist and trust that your therapy sessions will be a safe space. Some factors that you can consider include your therapist’s gender, age and religion.
Where can I seek help?
There are several places in Singapore that offer specialised help and treatments for ADHD, especially for children.
Child Guidance Clinic, Institute of Mental Health
10 Buangkok View, Singapore 539747
Child Guidance Clinic, Health Promotion Board
Second Hospital Ave, #03-01, Health Promotion Board, Singapore 168937
Department of Child Development, K.K. Women & Children's Hospital
100 Bukit Timah Road, Tower Level 5, Women, Singapore 229889
Developmental & Behavioural Paediatrics Services, National University Hospital
5 Lower Kent Ridge Road, Singapore 119074
Child Development Unit, Jurong Medical Centre
60 Jurong West Central 3, Level 2, Jurong Medical Centre, Singapore 648346
James Cook University Psychology Clinic
149 Sims Drive, Singapore 387380
Student Care Services (SCS)
Clementi: 437 Clementi Ave 3, #01-98, Singapore 120437 (6778 6867)
Hougang: 463 Hougang Ave 10, #01-964, Singapore 530463 (6286 9905)
Yishun: 202 Yishun Street 21, #01-89, Singapore 760202 (6759 6821)
ADHD can be difficult to manage but early diagnosis and treatment can make it easier to manage the condition. With treatment, children with ADHD can develop normally and form meaningful relationships with those around them.
At frankie, we make mental healthcare and wellness easy for all with just one small task a day. Head on guided wellness journeys that understand your stressors or triggers or work with our behavioural and wellness professionals - all from the comfort and privacy of your home. Sign up for our Closed BETA here.
This editorial section solely expresses the opinion of frankie and is not endorsed nor commissioned by any external party. The list is non-exhaustive. At frankie, we believe that your best provider of medical advice is your doctor. Please consult a doctor before undergoing any treatment or procedure.
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