ADHD makes it difficult to remain focused and sustain attention. Adults with ADHD typically find it challenging to complete work or school projects in a timely manner. They tend to be disorganized, forgetful, and have difficulty with time management. While some adults with ADHD are hyperactive, restless, or impulsive, many do not have these symptoms. For an adult to be diagnosed with ADHD, the symptoms must have been present since childhood, though often the disorder is not diagnosed until adulthood.
More than 8 million American adults have ADHD and less than 20 percent of them have been diagnosed or are seeking treatment. Many may not even realize they have the disorder. Sixty percent of children with ADHD will still have the disorder in adulthood, according to information from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.
ADHD may also be accompanied by other problems such as excessive anxiety or depression. Effective treatment reduces the impact of ADHD on patient’s lives, reducing development of anxiety or depression, and improving academic, vocational, and social functioning
What Causes ADHD?
While research is ongoing, the exact cause of ADHD is not known. However, according to the Mayo Clinic, there are several factors that can increase the risk of developing ADHD:
- Having ADHD as a child
- Having a relative who has ADHD
- Exposures to toxins or other problems during fetal development
How Can I Tell if I Have ADHD?
First, be aware that everyone has periods where it is difficult to concentrate or focus. As long as these instances are not common and do not interfere with your day-to-day life, it is unlikely that you have ADHD. However, if these symptoms cause extensive problems at work or in relationships, or if these symptoms create distress and anxiety, you may have ADHD.
Only a qualified physician can provide an accurate diagnosis to determine whether or not you have ADHD. We will provide a thorough clinical evaluation based upon current symptoms, educational history, medical history, and family medical history.
What Type of Treatment is Available for Adults with ADHD?
Treatment consists of a combination of medication and counseling.
While stimulants are typically the most commonly prescribed medications for ADHD, other medications can also be effective.
Psychotherapy can help you learn more about ADHD, manage symptoms, improve organizational skills and reduce stress. Therapy can include cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for identifying and changing thinking patterns and behaviors, marital and family counseling, or supportive therapy.
At Raleigh Psychiatric Associates, we understand that every patient is different and that it is vital to create behavioral strategies to help you succeed at your work and in your relationships. Although there is no cure for ADHD, it can be managed successfully by tailoring a course of treatment that will reduce symptoms and improve functioning.
We welcome the privilege of helping you and those you love face life’s challenges. Please contact us to schedule an appointment.
Anxiety and Depression Association of America. “Understanding Anxiety-Related Illnesses and Other Related Conditions: Adult ADHD.” Online.
The Mayo Clinic. “Adult Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder.” Online.