Attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is often thought of as a disorder that affects children. However, when children go undiagnosed, they grow into adults with ADHD who have spent a significant portion of their lives navigating how to live with ADHD on their own. Many go through life believing that they aren’t as intelligent as their peers or have a difficult time accomplishing goals. While ADHD may have an effect on an individual’s schooling experience, it does not impact their intelligence level.
As individuals with undiagnosed ADHD age, they tend to create their own coping mechanisms. Many adults with ADHD also struggle with substance abuse problems, which can ultimately lead to depression. If you or someone you know is dealing with adult ADHD, Blair Wellness Group in Beverly Hills can help. Our licensed psychologist and dedicated team are here to provide you with the support and treatment you need to live a happy and fulfilling life with ADHD. Schedule a consultation today to learn more.
Symptoms of ADHD in Adults
Adults who have ADHD have learned how to cope and live with the disorder, many times without even knowing it. Because of this, it can sometimes be difficult to identify ADHD in adults. However, these individuals commonly manifest similar symptoms and patterns that negatively impact the quality of their life.
Difficulty Getting Organized
Adults with ADHD have trouble with organization. While as children they probably had difficulty with handling school assignments, completing homework, and keeping track of projects, quizzes, tests, and more, as an adult the effects of ADHD can be even more detrimental. Adults with ADHD often have trouble keeping track of bills, coordinating their children’s activities, making and keeping appointments, and more.
Procrastinating and Missing Deadlines
Since adults with ADHD have trouble with organization, this often affects their ability to complete projects before deadlines. They tend to procrastinate until the last minute when there is little or no time left. This can also result in many partially completed projects without much attention being paid to details. Adults with ADHD commonly experience trouble at work and in their home lives due to procrastination.
Consistently Being Late
Adults with ADHD tend to get distracted easily. This can lead to them being late for work and other engagements. This is another aspect of ADHD that can negatively affect their ability to hold a job, as well as impact their home life. One common scenario that often makes an adult with ADHD late for work occurs when they get distracted by watching a video online or get caught up in a project when they should be preparing to leave. They quickly lose track of time and end up being late.
Tendency to Hyperfocus
While those with ADHD are known for the inability to focus on a subject for long periods of time, that is a problem that tends to occur most when they are uninterested in a subject. However, when an adult with ADHD is interested in something, it can almost be compared to going down a rabbit hole. They begin with one task, get distracted by something else, and then continue to focus on this one aspect for long periods of time. Hyperfocusing on a project can also be a way of redirecting their thoughts away from a task they are not interested in or are having trouble comprehending. They will hyperfocus on a task or subject that is easy while ignoring the one that really requires their attention.
Trouble Finishing Projects
An adult with ADHD has a tendency to start a project with a lot of enthusiasm. However, they have trouble following through. Before the project is complete, they’ll find another to become excited about and switch their focus. This commonly leaves them with many unfinished projects that they began excited about, but quickly lost interest in.
We all have a tendency to want to work on quick, easy tasks first. However, we understand how to prioritize tasks and self-regulate. An adult with ADHD does not always have this ability. It’s common for them to quickly handle easy tasks and continuously put off tasks that require more focus. This often has a negative effect on both work and home life.
Those with ADHD will also have difficulty with memory, particularly short-term memory. It’s easy for them to get distracted and forget that it’s time to pick the kids up from practice or that they made a prior engagement. Adults with ADHD require more constant reminding, especially if it’s something that doesn’t particularly interest them.
While it’s usually easy to notice a child with hyperactivity, it can manifest slightly differently in adults. Adults with ADHD often have trouble relaxing and sitting still, but instead of looking like hyperactivity, it can appear as though they are tense or on edge.
Anxiety and Depression
Many adults with ADHD also struggle with anxiety. Additionally, trying to manage anxiety and ADHD on their own can lead to depression. Many times, adults that end up getting treatment for their ADHD actually go to counseling for depression or anxiety first and then learn that they’ve been self-medicating and dealing with ADHD their entire lives.
Treatment for ADHD
ADHD, when left undiagnosed and untreated, can have a significant negative impact on a person’s life. While there are plenty of articles out there that will suggest the use of a calendar, alarms, and other organization systems, it can be difficult to navigate on your own. However, counseling and therapy have both proven to be successful treatments for ADHD.
Blair Wellness Group
If you are struggling with adult ADHD, it may seem like a constant, ongoing struggle. But, with the help of a licensed psychologist like Dr. Cassidy Blair of Blair Wellness Group, there is hope. You don’t have to deal with ADHD alone.
At Blair Wellness Group, we have more than 15 years of experience providing Beverly Hills and the surrounding areas with counseling, therapy, and other treatments for ADHD, anxiety, depression, and other disorders. We utilize evidence-based treatment approaches to meet the specific needs of each client. Contact us today to learn more about us and schedule a consultation for adult ADHD.