Understanding adhd in adults
When thinking about Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), most people picture a hyperactive child in the grocery store, a disruptive kid in the classroom or a child who takes longer than necessary to finish a homework assignment. But what you may not realize is that while ADHD affects millions of children, it is also a disorder that affects approximately 8 million adults.
What Is Adult ADHD?
Although many people tend to think of ADHD as a childhood disorder, up to 80 percent of children with ADHD will exhibit symptoms into adolescence and up to 65 percent of children will continue to exhibit symptoms into adulthood.
Adults with untreated ADHD may be perceived as “scatterbrained,” “disorganized” or “lazy,” but what many people are unaware of is that ADHD is an impairing neurological disorder, not merely an organizational or behavioral problem.
In his new book entitled “Scattered Minds,” Dr. Lenard Adler, director of the Adult ADHD Program at New York University, presents the latest information for the growing number of adults who suspect or know that they have ADHD. The book reviews previously unrecognized signals of ADHD, misconceptions about this disorder and information on getting an accurate diagnosis and treatment options.
How Is ADHD Diagnosed?
While there is no single objective test to determine if someone has ADHD, “Scattered Minds” includes a simple self-screener, adopted by the World Health Organization, that helps the reader assess whether they have symptoms of ADHD. Dr. Adler urges readers to fill out the screener and bring it to their physician for a formal evaluation.
How Is ADHD Treated?
Although there is no “cure” for ADHD, there are accepted treatments that specifically help patients control its symptoms. In his book “Scattered Minds,” Dr. Adler explains that the most common treatments include educational approaches, psychological or behavioral modification, and prescription medication. Adults with untreated ADHD may experience greater risk for lower educational and occupational achievement, problems in relationships with family and friends, and greater risk for driving accidents and traffic tickets. Adults who have not been treated for ADHD are 50 percent more likely to be unemployed as well as twice as likely to smoke cigarettes.
“Scattered Minds” reveals the previously unrecognized signals for adults who suspect they may have ADHD and underscores that ADHD is a very real and accepted medical condition. Adults with ADHD may have greater difficulty dealing with everyday problems when compared to their peers and may even face challenges in their personal lives and careers that their peers do not encounter. If you suspect you or somebody you know may have adult ADHD, pick up a copy of “Scattered Minds” and take the simple screening test.