ADULT ADHD


ADHD amongst adults is common and typically also affects executive skills such as organization, planning, execution (finishing), and therefore affects self esteem and motivation.  It can be difficult to diagnose and often requires specialty assessment.  Many adults aren’t aware that they have ADHD—they just feel challenged by everyday tasks.  There is a heavy genetic loading and as a result, parents recognize ADHD symptoms in themselves when their child is diagnosed with the disorder. Some may have struggled with symptoms in childhood, but without proper diagnosis. Studies suggest that between 30% and 70% of children with ADHD continue to have symptoms as adults.

Diagnostic Criteria for Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder:

A persistent pattern of inattentionand/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that is more frequently displayed and more severe than is typically observed in individuals at a comparable level of development.

Inattention

- often fails to give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, work, or other activities
- often has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities
-often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly often does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork, chores, or duties in the workplace (not due to oppositional behavior or failure to understand instructions)
- often has difficulty organizing tasks and activities
- often avoids, dislikes, or is reluctant to engage in tasks that require sustained mental effort (such as schoolwork or homework)
- often loses things necessary for tasks or activities (eg, toys, school assignments, pencils, books, or tools)
- is often easily distracted by extraneous stimuli
- is often forgetful in daily activities

Hyperactivity

- often fidgets with hands or feet or squirms in seat
- often leaves seat in classroom or in other situations in which remaining seated is expected
- often runs about or climbs excessively in situations in which it is inappropriate (in adolescents or adults, may be limited to subjective feelings of restlessness)
- often has difficulty playing or engaging in leisure activities quietly
- is often “on the go” or often acts as if "driven by a motor"
- often talks excessively

Impulsivity

- often blurts out answers before questions have been completed
- often has difficulty awaiting turn
- often interrupts or intrudes on others (eg, butts into conversations or games)