19815 Bay Branch Rd
Andalusia, Alabama 36420
(334) 222-2523
HELPLINE: 1-877-530-0002



SCAMHC is an approved Mental Health site for the National Health Service Corps Loan Repayment program.  Find out the program details and see if you qualify by visiting: http://nhsc.hrsa.gov/

SCAMHC is an Equal Opportunity Provider and Employer and maintains a Drug-Free Workplace.

SCAMHC serves all individuals regardless of inability to pay. Discounts for essential services are offered based on family size and income. For more information, contact (334) 222-2523 or our 24/7 Helpline at 1-877-530-0002.



powered by centersite dot net
Child & Adolescent Development: Overview
Basic InformationMore InformationLatest NewsQuestions and AnswersVideosLinksBook Reviews
100 Things Guys Need to Know3 NBS of Julian DrewA Guide to Asperger SyndromeA Tribe ApartA User Guide to the GF/CF Diet for Autism, Asperger Syndrome and AD/HDA Walk in the Rain With a BrainAdolescence and Body ImageAdolescent DepressionAfterAggression and Antisocial Behavior in Children and AdolescentsAll Alone in the UniverseAmelia RulesAmericaAnother PlanetAntisocial Behavior in Children and AdolescentsArtemis FowlAssessment and Treatment of Childhood Problems, Second EditionAutistic Spectrum DisordersBad GirlBetween Two WorldsBeyond AppearanceBeyond Diversity DayBig Mouth & Ugly GirlBill HensonBipolar DisordersBody Image, Eating Disorders, and ObesityBody Image, Eating Disorders, and Obesity in YouthBoyBoysBrandedBreaking PointBreathing UnderwaterBringing Up ParentsBullying and TeasingCan't Eat, Won't EatCatalystChild and Adolescent Psychological DisordersChildren Changed by TraumaChildren with Emerald EyesChildren’s Dreaming and the Development of Consciousness City of OneConcise Guide to Child and Adolescent PsychiatryConquering the Beast WithinContentious IssuesCrackedCutDancing in My NuddypantsDemystifying the Autistic ExperienceDescartes' BabyDilemmas of DesireDirtyDoing ItDoing SchoolDying to Be ThinEating an ArtichokeEducating Children With AutismElijah's CupEllison the ElephantEmerald City BluesEmotional and Behavioral Problems of Young ChildrenEvery Girl Tells a StoryFast GirlsFeather BoyFiregirlForever YoungFreaks, Geeks and Asperger SyndromeFreewillGeography ClubGeorgia Under WaterGirl in the MirrorGirlfightingGirlsourceGirlWiseGLBTQGood GirlsGoodbye RuneGranny Torrelli Makes SoupGrowing Up GirlHandbook for BoysHealing ADDHeartbeatHelping Children Cope With Disasters and TerrorismHelping Parents, Youth, and Teachers Understand Medications for Behavioral and Emotional ProblemsHollow KidsHow Children Learn the Meanings of WordsHow to Keep Your Teenager Out of Trouble and What to Do If You Can'tHug MeIntrusive ParentingIt's Me!It's Perfectly NormalJake RileyJoey Pigza Swallowed the KeyJuvenile-Onset SchizophreniaKeeping the MoonKilling MonstersKim: Empty InsideKnocked Out by My Nunga-NungasLaura Numeroff's 10-Step Guide to Living with Your MonsterLearning About School ViolenceLeo the Lightning BugLet Kids Be KidsLiberation's ChildrenLife As We Know ItLisa, Bright and DarkLittle ChicagoLord of the FliesLoserLove and SexLove That DogManicMastering Anger and AggressionMind FieldsMiss American PieMom, Dad, I'm Gay.MonsterMore Than a LabelMyths of ChildhoodNew Hope for Children and Teens with Bipolar DisorderNo Two AlikeNot Much Just Chillin'Odd Girl OutOdd Girl Speaks OutOn the Frontier of AdulthoodOne Hot SecondOne in ThirteenOphelia SpeaksOphelia's MomOur Journey Through High Functioning Autism and Asperger SyndromeOut of the DustOvercoming School AnxietyParenting and the Child's WorldParenting Your Out-Of-Control TeenagerPediatric PsychopharmacologyPeriod PiecesPhobic and Anxiety Disorders in Children and AdolescentsPINSPraising Boys WellPraising Girls WellPretty in PunkPrincess in the SpotlightProblem Child or Quirky Kid?Psychotherapy As PraxisPsychotherapy for Children and AdolescentsRaising a Self-StarterRaising BlazeRaising Resilient ChildrenReclaiming Our ChildrenRedressing the EmperorReducing Adolescent RiskRethinking ADHDReweaving the Autistic TapestryRineke DijkstraRitalin is Not the Answer Action GuideRunning on RitalinSay YesSexual Teens, Sexual MediaSexuality in AdolescenceShooterShort PeopleShould I Medicate My Child?Skin GameSmackSmashedStaying Connected to Your TeenagerStick FigureStoner & SpazStop Arguing with Your KidsStraight Talk about Your Child's Mental HealthStrong, Smart, & BoldStudent DepressionSurvival Strategies for Parenting Children with Bipolar DisorderSurviving OpheliaTaking Charge of ADHD, Revised EditionTaming the Troublesome ChildTargeting AutismTeaching Problems and the Problems of TeachingTeen Angst? NaaahThat SummerThe American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook Of Child And Adolescent PsychiatryThe Arctic IncidentThe Bipolar ChildThe Buffalo TreeThe Bully, the Bullied, and the BystanderThe Carnivorous CarnivalThe Depressed ChildThe Developing MindThe Dragons of AutismThe Dream BearerThe Dulcimer Boy The Einstein SyndromeThe EpidemicThe Eternity CubeThe Explosive ChildThe Field of the DogsThe First IdeaThe Identity TrapThe Inside Story on Teen GirlsThe Little TernThe Mean Girl MotiveThe Men They Will BecomeThe Myth of LazinessThe New Gay TeenagerThe Notebook GirlsThe Nurture AssumptionThe Opposite of InvisibleThe Order of the Poison OakThe Other ParentThe Present Moment in Psychotherapy and Everyday LifeThe Real Truth About Teens and SexThe Rise and Fall of the American TeenagerThe Secret Lives of GirlsThe Sex Lives of TeenagersThe Shared HeartThe Spider and the BeeThe StepsThe Thought that CountsThe Unhappy ChildThe Vile VillageThe Whole ChildThen Again, Maybe I Won'tTherapy with ChildrenThings I Have to Tell YouTouching Spirit BearTrauma in the Lives of ChildrenTreacherous LoveTrue BelieverTwistedUnhappy TeenagersWay to Be!We're Not MonstersWhat about the KidsWhat Would Joey Do?What's Happening to My Body? Book for BoysWhat's Happening to My Body? Book for GirlsWhen Nothing Matters AnymoreWhen Sex Goes to SchoolWhen Your Child Has an Eating DisorderWhere The Kissing Never StopsWhose America?Why Are You So Sad?WinnicottWorried All the TimeYes, Your Teen Is Crazy!You Hear MeYoung People and Mental HealthYour Child, Bully or Victim?
Related Topics

ADHD: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
Childhood Mental Disorders and Illnesses

by Russell Barkley
Guilford Press, 2000
Review by Michael Sakuma, Ph.D. on Aug 5th 2003

Taking Charge of ADHD, Revised Edition

I was lucky enough to be able to read Russell Barkley's (2000) Taking Charge of ADHD around the same time as David Stein's Ritalin is Not the Answer Action Guide (2002).  Both are guides to parents in learning to recognize, cope and manage a child with ADD/ADHD.  Taking Charge purports to be an Authoritative guide.  From what I have seen, I would tend to agree. Barkley is one of the leaders in the field of ADD/ADHD study and his book gives parents a readable survey about what is known and not known about the disorder. The book is divided into four parts, in part I, parents are educated about the putative causes of ADD, what to expect and psychosocial aspects of the disorder.  Part II is focused towards practical parenting issues such as when to have a child evaluated, what to ask the evaluator, how to cope with the evaluation and how to provide self-care.  Barkley also advocates a behavioral model and in part III, puts forth "8 steps to better behavior" as well as techniques towards improved problem solving and family communication. In part IV, Barkley describes common pharmacologic treatments for ADD in plain terms.

In all, I find this a well-rounded resource.  The book is full of case studies describing many different manifestations of the disorder.  I am confidant that parents will be able to identify and "see their child" within the myriad of case examples used to give a human face to the material.  The book is written in a convenient question and answer format with answers organized under the topic headings and short descriptions and scientific references to back up the assertions.  What I like most about the book is the fact that Barkley encourages parents to be active "scientists" in treating the disorder.  There is a plethora of information and misinformation out there on ADHD and (oftentimes desperate) parents should have some basic skills in being able to evaluate the differing opinions, theories and treatment.  I find Barkley's approach the most empirically sound view that I have thus-far seen and a great starting point for parents as they build a model of their own understanding of the disorder(s).


You might have noticed that I made the word disorder (possibly) plural.  In this, I mean to suggest that the disorder we call ADHD, may actually consist of several different disorders.  In my review of Ritalin is Not the Answer Action Guide I suggested that there may be no magic bullet, and I do not believe that Barkley is suggesting that there is one.  In fact, I find the tenor of the discussion in the book rather even tempered.  

The approach can best be described as biopsychosocial (a stance by some practitioners in the field that any disorder has biological, psychological and social components). While any "psychiatric" disorder may have all three of these issues that may play a role in the maintenance, cause and effects of the problem, different children may have a different weighting of these variables.  Thus, one child may have greater social dysfunction (with concomitant underlying psychological distress) and another might have biological dysfunction, with resultant social dysfunction. Barkley seems to lean towards the biological pole of this equation (as do I) and posits a model of ADHD that is associated with frontal lobe dysfunction (the part of the brain that acts as the managerial executive over the other areas) in which a child has a problem with inhibition and self-control.  He believes that this dysfunction necessitates that children be given stricter behavioral guidelines and control to help them overcome their dysfunction. It seems that Barkley is suggesting that all ADHD children suffer from the same underlying problem, a point in which I cannot bring myself to agree), however, this model is respected and well represented in the more "scientific" aspects of the field.  I should mention that I felt that Barkley's coverage of neurofeedback (eeg biofeedback) was almost nonexistent (a few paragraphs). Though he rightly states that much research needs to be done in the field before we know if it works, I found his coverage and description rather dismissive and unrepresentative of the research that has been done. 

In short, I would recommend Barkley's book.  No book is perfect, but this is the best book for parents that I have seen so far.


© 2003 Michael Sakuma

Michael Sakuma is Chair of the Psychology Department at Dowling College, Long Island, New York.