The American Psychiatric Association reveals that about 5% of children are affected with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), and around half will continue to exhibit symptoms well into adult life. The CDC believes that the percentage is closer to 11% for children ages 4 to 17.
Many cases of ADHD in adults are undiagnosed, which often results in mental and physical problems that ultimately affect relationships and bring about difficulties in everyday living. Here’s what the symptoms look like:
A lack of focus or too much of it
A lack of focus isn’t almost always assumed to mean having difficulties paying attention. While there is an element of truth to that, it usually involves much more than that. An adult with ADHD will exhibit signs of being easily distracted, finding it difficult to listen during a conversation, overlooking details, and failing to complete tasks or projects.
On the other hand, a person with adult ADHD can also show signs of being too focused. This is called hyper-focus and it involves being too engrossed in a task or project that everything else is ignored. This pattern of behavior usually affects relationships.
A tendency to be impulsive
A person with ADHD will manifest impulsiveness, acting without thinking about the consequences. An adult ADHD sufferer can also be inappropriate in social settings and might interrupt others during a conversation. At work, they tend to rush through tasks.
An inclination towards emotional problems
ADHD in adult life means everyday living is chaotic. It can feel like emotions are wildly swinging from one end to another. Such feelings can cause a person to feel easily feel bored, leading them to find excitement without second thought.
Also, a person with ADHD in adulthood may find little frustrations unbearable, which can lead to depression and mood swings. This kind of behavior can cause problems in a person’s personal and professional relationships if left untreated.
Hypercritical evaluation of oneself
An adult with ADHD may be really critical with themselves, leading them to have a poor self-image. Since they find it hard to concentrate, they tend to have problems with school, work, and/or relationships. Failing in these areas can cause them to see themselves in a harsh light.
Lack of motivation
Adults with ADHD may seem open to many experiences, but they may also lack the motivation to complete activities or participate in them fully. This kind of behavior, along with a lack of organizational skills, make it difficult to get to the end of a project since long-term commitment isn’t there.
Living with ADHD can be challenging, but help is available. A diagnosis obtained through a comprehensive psychological evaluation for adult ADHD, and treatment which includes psychotherapy, can help address with symptom management.
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