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ADHD in Adults

What is adult ADHD?

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is not just a childhood problem and some could continue to have symptoms of ADHD as an adult. ADHD sufferers have difficulty maintaining attention. They could have hyperactivity and could act impulsively. Adults with ADHD tend to have more inattention and impulsivity leading to problems at the workplace in terms of organisational skills, time management and their ability to hold their jobs.

Adults with ADHD may also suffer from other difficulties such as low self-esteem and personality difficulties. They are also more likely to suffer substance abuse problems and depression. 

Can adults suddenly develop the condition?

ADHD is a developmental disorder and in most of the cases the symptoms start before the age of 12. This can continue into adulthood. Hence, it is unlikely for symptoms to suddenly appear in adulthood.

Can a person with ADHD recover from this condition?

Symptoms of ADHD, in particular hyperactivity, is less seen in adults. Difficulty maintaining attention is more common in adults. It is likely that some of the symptoms of ADHD do improve as a person gets older (about 10% reduction of symptoms every decade) and with appropriate intervention and treatment plan.

What are the treatment options for adult ADHD?

Treatment for adult ADHD consists of medications, psychotherapy and also managing other mood symptoms and self-esteem issues. Some patients may need coaching to improve their life skills such as organisation skills, time management and interpersonal skills.

Coping with ADHD

ADHD sufferers tend to forget their appointments and need some help with lifestyle management. They can make lists, keep diaries, stick reminders and set aside some time to plan what they need to do if they find it hard to stay organised.

Smart phones are also useful in integrating many organisation tasks and often have the advantage that they can be synchronised with desktop computers. These devices can also be used as electronic reminders to help with remembering medications and appointments.

ADHD sufferers are more prone to anger, hence they can let off steam by exercising regularly and finding ways to help them relax, such as listening to music or learning relaxation techniques.



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