Having a clear understanding of what research, studies, and real life experiences tell us about ADHD is what will enable each individual to make informed decisions on how to treat this mental health and behavioral concern.
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) Affects People of All Ages
ADHD is a mental health condition that impacts people of all ages. Many people associate it as primarily affecting young boys, but that’s not true. ADHD impacts children and adults. Some symptoms overlap, and others are age-specific. Many people with ADHD feel misunderstood because their symptoms make them appear careless or rude. They’re not trying to offend others, they have difficulty certain behaviors, such as waiting for their turn to enter the conversation or a hard time focusing on schoolwork or your job. Regardless of how old someone is, ADHD can severely impact an individual’s quality of life if left untreated.
Common Symptoms of ADHD
Here are some signs of ADHD that you’ll notice in children:
Interrupting - A child will have trouble waiting for a person to finish before interjecting their opinion
Waiting their turn- They’ll struggle with waiting in line for snack time or their turn to play on the monkey bars on the playground
Difficulty focusing - The child might zone out, or look disinterested in what’s happening in the classroom or what another person is telling them
Avoidance - A child may avoid doing a mundane task because they’re not interested in it or it’s too difficult
Being forgetful - A common symptom of ADHD in children being forgetful. They might now remember to take their backpack to school or what their homework assignment is
Adults have overlapping symptoms of ADHD to children such as trouble focusing or interrupting. People struggle with doing tedious tasks, because people with ADHD are easily bored, and want to be stimulated. There are specific symptoms that you notice that differ from those you see in kids.
Here are the Common Symptoms of ADHD in Adults
Driving in a reckless manner - An adult with ADHD may become restless, and not think of the consequences on the road
Difficulty listening- Someone with ADHD might space out in a college course or an important business meeting at work
Trouble in their interpersonal relationships- Sometimes people with ADHD appear selfish in relationships. They may not seem to be listening to their partner or forget significant dates or plans making their loved one feel devalued
Starting tasks and not finishing them - Adults with ADHD tend to be creative, but have difficulty following through on ideas or activities that they start
Misconceptions About ADHD
Some people think of those with ADHD as rude or lazy. These stereotypes are not only untrue but dangerous. For example, a person with ADHD might struggle with interrupting because they’re excited about the conversation they’re having. It’s not that they don’t care about what the other person is saying. A person with ADHD isn’t lazy. There are many reasons they may not be able to complete a task. It might be their lack of focus, or finding something uninteresting. It might be their fear of making a careless mistake due to forgetfulness. It’s important to remember that people with ADHD don’t intentionally want to inconvenience those around them. They’re struggling with managing their symptoms and trying to fit into a world that seems to misunderstand them. That’s why a person with ADHD might become frustrated or depressed.
Having ADHD May Result in Depression
When you feel like people don’t understand you, you might become discouraged. That’s understandable, but it can be a painful feeling. Sometimes people who have ADHD try to explain their behaviors and others don’t get it. After attempting to show others how or why they’re acting in a particular way, and being met with frustration or a lack of empathy, the person may fall into depression and isolate. It’s hard to feel these feelings, and they can benefit from journaling them and talking about them in counseling.
Counseling Can Help Those Living With ADHD
When you feel like your ADHD symptoms are unmanageable, or you want to learn coping strategies to stay organized, counseling can help. Maybe you want to work on interpersonal relationship problems such as interrupting or focusing on the other person’s need to feel validated. These are things you can discuss with a counselor. Online therapy is an excellent option to talk about how to deal with problematic behaviors that you’re experiencing as a result of ADHD. There are counselors at BetterHelp who understand your symptoms and want to help you learn to manage them. Don’t be afraid to reach out for help.
We trust that the above articles have helped you decide why and how some people choose to treat diagnosed ADHD. Aside from what's here, if you would like to speak with one of our licensed and accredited online counselors, please sign up today to get the expertise and support you need.