Jimmy* came to us with challenges.
Jimmy is a 10-year-old who had been diagnosed with four different mental health disorders – ADHD, disruptive mood dysregulation disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, and depression – prior to coming to our clinic.
Despite having struggled with these many issues throughout his life, he was a bright and pleasant boy. However, the medications the doctors had prescribed in an attempt address his significant outbursts were simply not working.
During our evaluation with Jimmy, we found that his correct diagnosis was autism spectrum disorder. It was one diagnosis that covered ALL of his symptoms. I sat down with Jimmy’s parents to discuss the results, and the stories they told me about Jimmy’s behaviors were very consistent with what we had found during testing.
Several months later, I spoke with Jimmy’s parents. They both expressed gratitude for the evaluation we had performed which had been helpful for their family. Jimmy’s mom said they had been having these issues since Jimmy was two years old but that now they better understood how to help him.
They said that because they had an accurate diagnosis, Jimmy was now on the right medications. They described how this had really helped him to be more successful. While he had not yet begun to receive our recommended services, they would be starting soon.
*composite of many clients
Why neuropsychological testing?
Parents and adults frequently call our office to better understand what neuropsychological testing is. Frequently, other therapists have discussed other types of testing services with them, so they want to understand what we do.
It might be time to test for a wide variety of reasons.
Have you noticed your child struggling in school with academic difficulties, inattention, behavioral problems, or thinking/memory problems resulting from a medical condition? Or are you an adult struggling in college?
Or perhaps you or your child has suffered from physical issues, such as traumatic brain injury or concussion. Or mental health problems such as depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
Or do you have an older loved one experiencing memory or thinking problems?
What does it involve?
During the Neuropsychological testing process, we look at different types of abilities relating to the brain’s ability to execute and manage several different areas of function: attention, memory, emotion, intellect, language, fine motor control, visual-spatial ability (the ability to process things visually, and know what position in the space we are occupying), and executive function (the ability to manage oneself, the ability to set and achieve a goal, and the ability to control the way one thinks and is able to regulate oneself).
Why is this important?
Through neuropsychological testing, we can discover what each person’s natural strengths and abilities are along with areas of difficulty or those in need of improvement. The process helps us give each individual an accurate diagnosis along with appropriate recommendations that can help them to move forward.
We all have strengths and weaknesses. There is no perfect person.
That is why, when I talk to parents and adults during the final feedback appointment, I explain not only the weaknesses identified, but also how the strengths identified can be a part of their solution.
“Dr. Bonack is very warm and caring. She takes real pride in the work that she does. My daughter has a Neurocognitive disorder that Dr. Bonack diagnosed, after we had gone down many different avenues to get some answers.
Out of all of the doctors and testing we had done for our daughter, Dr. Bonack gave us the starting point we’ve been looking for. She continues to keep in touch and is genuinely concerned about her patients. She has offered to help us find additional resources for our daughter. I would recommend Neuro Hope and Dr. Bonack to anyone looking for answers and help in the right direction.”
“Thank you, Dr. Bonack! I can’t thank you enough for truly caring about our daughter and us.” ~ Kisha