ADHD Specialist

Richard G. Merkler, MD, FAAP -  - Pediatrician

Richard G. Merkler, MD, FAAP

Pediatrician located in Midtown West, New York, NY

Richard Merkler, MD, FAAP, brings rich experience and expertise to the diagnosis and management of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and teens. Through a comprehensive evaluation, a dynamic approach to treatment, and attention to all of the systems impacted by ADHD, Dr. Merkler is able to significantly improve symptoms and quality of life for patients that visit his Midtown West in Manhattan, New York City practice.


What is ADHD?

ADHD stands for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, which refers to a behavioral disorder characterized by inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. These symptoms make it challenging to follow instructions, participate in a conversation, and start and complete tasks. They can interfere with relationships, school, or success at work.

What’s the difference between ADD and ADHD?

ADD (attention-deficit disorder) and ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder) were once used separately to describe the disorder with and without the hyperactivity component. Recently, the group of disorders was combined into attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, and the terms are used interchangeably.

What are the symptoms of ADHD?

The most common symptoms of ADHD can be associated with inattention, impulsivity, and hyperactivity and include:

  • Frequently interrupting others
  • Inability to start and finish tasks
  • Failing to do as asked or follow through
  • Constant movement
  • Fidgeting
  • Difficulty focusing or listening
  • Impulsivity; acting on impulses without thinking

When untreated, severe ADHD can result in poor performance at school, alienation from friends and classmates, family problems, and low self-esteem.

Who can treat ADHD?

In many cases, a primary care doctor or pediatrician first suggests the possibility of ADHD. However, diagnosis and adequate treatment are best provided by an experienced pediatrician, often in conjunction with mental health specialists or therapists.

How is ADHD treated?

The most effective treatment for ADHD takes into consideration all aspects of the disorder as well as risks associated with treatment. Treatment generally includes:

  • Education for parents regarding how to react to their child’s behaviors and how to promote success
  • Cognitive behavior therapy for the child, which can teach them to identify the thoughts and behaviors that may have negative consequences and give them the skills they need to make different choices
  • Lifestyle changes, such as diet, exercise, bedtime, routine, and environment
  • Medication designed to replace a missing chemical in the brain and promote focus

It’s also important that treatment and ongoing evaluation take into consideration any coexisting diagnoses and related problems, such as bed-wetting, which is common in children with ADHD. Furthermore, medication can affect sleep and appetite, so careful evaluation of side effects and dose adjustment are required for the best results.

Is medication harmful?

Many parents delay medicating due to a belief that it may harm their child or prevent them from expressing themselves. On the contrary, medication that’s prescribed appropriately for ADHD often allows the child’s personality to come out in the way they intend. It can improve their focus, function, attention, communication, and ability to follow through. The vast majority of parents are pleased to find that medication, when used responsibly and carefully monitored, produces dramatic improvements in their child’s quality of life.


We accept the majority of health insurance plans. Please contact our office if you do not see yours listed or have any other questions.

1199 National Benefit Fund
Blue Cross Blue Shield
Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield
Great West
Oscar Health Insurance Co.
Oxford United Healthcare
United Healthcare