What Is ADHD?

Symptoms commonly associated with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are also caused by a variety of other illnesses and conditions.

These symptoms include:

  • Difficulty focusing in a variety of situations
  • Problems getting organized
  • Not listening when spoken to
  • Having trouble sitting still or waiting in line
  • Constantly interrupting others
  • Being easily distracted
  • Impulsiveness

How to Get Evaluated

If you have not previously been diagnosed with ADHD, the first step is to call us at 360-650-3400 to make a mental health telephone triage appointment to discuss your history, current concerns, and Western resources.

If you meet with a provider at the Student Health Center for a mental health evaluation, it may be determined that comprehensive psychological testing is necessary before we diagnose and treat ADHD.  Sometimes diagnosis is not straightforward and we need to differentiate your symptoms from those present in other disorders (e.g., learning or mood disorders) to ensure you are obtaining appropriate treatment.  If needed, we can provide referrals to psychologists in the Bellingham community that offer psychological testing. 

Treatment for Diagnosed ADHD

If you have been previously diagnosed and treated for ADHD (during the elementary/middle/high school timeframe or any time following childhood), you will need to have records transferred from your previous provider. Please fax these medical records, including your ADHD diagnosis, to the Student Health Center fax line at 360-650-3883.  Once the records are received, we will contact you.

Depending on the quality and extent of the records provided, we may ask for additional information before scheduling you with a Student Health Center provider, or we may request that you have a new evaluation before we can prescribe medications.

Compliance Contract

If any stimulant-based medication is prescribed, you are required to sign and comply with an additional Stimulant Use Contract. We will only prescribe stimulants when students are substance-free as proven by a negative urine drug screen done at the expense of the student. Based on our current stimulant contract, the student will be asked to provide a urine sample to test for recreational substances, including marijuana used for any reason. If the test is positive for the presence of THC or other non-prescribed substance, no stimulant prescription will be written until that test becomes negative.  We are happy to discuss non-stimulant treatment of ADHD symptoms with students who are seeking help with focus/concentration concerns but are unwilling or unable to cut back on substance use. We are also available to support students who want to pursue support for substance use/misuse.

Campus Resources