Updated: Jun 4
March 1, 2023
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common neurodevelopmental disorder affecting both children and adults. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a condition that affects approximately 5-10% of children and 2.5-5% of adults globally. Living with ADHD can be challenging, but with the right resources and strategies, one can lead a productive and fulfilling life. ADHD disorder characterized by ongoing patterns of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity that interfere with daily functioning and development. It can cause difficulties in various areas of life, including school or work performance, relationships, self-esteem, and time management. However, with proper guidance and support, individuals with ADHD can lead successful, fulfilling lives. In this article, we will explore the definition of ADHD, how it is diagnosed, treatment options, and tips for managing it. We will also share some valuable resources to help you learn more about this condition.
ADHD has three primary subtypes:
- Predominantly Inattentive Presentation: Mainly marked by problems with attention and focus.
- Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation: Primarily characterized by hyperactivity and impulsivity.
- Combined Presentation: Features a mix of inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive symptoms.
How to Diagnose ADHD
Diagnosing ADHD typically involves a comprehensive assessment by a mental health professional such as a psychologist, psychiatrist or pediatrician. The diagnostic process involves:
- Reviewing the patient's medical history
- Conducting interviews with the patient and other relevant individuals (e.g., parents or teachers)
- Using standardized rating scales to evaluate ADHD symptoms
- Ruling out other potential causes for the symptoms (e.g., anxiety or learning disabilities)
Medication treatment for ADHD
Medication is often prescribed to help manage ADHD symptoms. The two main types of medication for treating ADHD are stimulants and non-stimulants:
Stimulants: These medications are the most commonly prescribed treatments for ADHD. They help increase dopamine and norepinephrine levels in the brain, improving focus and reducing impulsivity. Examples include methylphenidate (Ritalin) and amphetamine (Adderall).
Non-stimulants: These medications can also be effective in managing ADHD symptoms but work differently than stimulants. Atomoxetine (Strattera) and guanfacine (Intuniv) are examples of non-stimulant medications.
Tips for dealing with ADHD
1) Implement Structure and Routine
Establish a daily schedule consisting of consistent times for waking up, eating, engaging in activities, and going to bed. These habits can provide stability to those with ADHD, making it easier for them to stay focused.
2) Break Tasks into Smaller Steps
To prevent overwhelming feelings, break tasks into manageable chunks, setting deadlines and specific objectives for each step.
3) Embrace Physical Activity
Regular exercise has been shown to improve concentration, decrease anxiety, and enhance mood in individuals with ADHD. Aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity per day to reap these benefits.
4) Keep Distractions to a Minimum
Create a peaceful work environment free from unnecessary distractions, like excessive noise or visual clutter. Maintaining an organized space can also assist in staying focused.
5) Utilize Tools and Reminders
Tools like calendars, checklists, notification apps, and planners can help someone with ADHD stay on top of their responsibilities and improve time management skills.
6) Speak Up About Concerns
Individuals with ADHD should feel comfortable communicating their needs with friends, family members, supervisors, or teachers. Establishing open communication can foster collaboration in finding practical solutions that accommodate everyone's requirements.
Treatment For long-term Success
At Pine Ridge Mental Healthcare, we’ve found success using a variety of approaches to the management of ADHD. Getting your concentration and focus under control is a key step in managing your life.
Our team works to reduce your reliance on medications by educating you about the different tools available and how life situations can affect your mood. And we help keep you on track with regular check-ins to monitor your health.
For more information about if you may have ADHD or for help managing your mental health, schedule an appointment online or over the phone at Pine Ridge Mental Healthcare in Owasso, Oklahoma. If you are interested in other services we provide, check out our services page.
a) CHADD (Children & Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder)
CHADD is a non-profit organization offering education, advocacy, and support for those affected by ADHD. Their website provides a wealth of resources ranging from webinars to discussion forums.
b) ADDitude Magazine
ADDitude Magazine features expert advice, inspiring stories, and practical strategies for individuals and families coping with ADHD.
Understood is an organization committed to assisting individuals with learning and attention issues. Their website provides resources, tools, and expert advice on managing ADHD across all stages of life.
d) National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
NIMH is the leading US federal agency conducting research on mental health disorders