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ADHD can and should be treated

When other people, including yourself, mistakenly see yourself as lazy or uncaring, treating your ADHD can change your life.

ADHD can and should be treated

When other people, including yourself, mistakenly see yourself as lazy or uncaring, treating your ADHD can change your life.

What we can help with

Motivation

Organization

Mood swings

Forgetfulness

Insomnia

Restlessness

Treatment works

ADHD symptoms are more commonplace than you might think, and 70-90% of people treated with stimulant medication respond to treatment. Treating ADHD may not only help with your attention and organization, but it may also improve irritability, mood symptoms, and self-esteem. Many of our clients feel treatment has been life-changing for them, and they wish they’d sought it out earlier.

 

What we can help with

Motivation

Organization

Mood swings

Forgetfulness

Impulsive choices

Restlessness

Treatment works

ADHD symptoms are more commonplace than you might think, and 70-90% of people treated with stimulant medication respond to treatment. Treating ADHD may not only help with your attention and organization, but it may also improve irritability, mood symptoms, and self-esteem. Many of our clients feel treatment has been life-changing for them, and they wish they’d sought it out earlier..

 

FAQs about ADHD

Is it called ADD or ADHD?

Both. The naming of conditions changes over time, highlighting different categories of symptoms. The term ADHD refers to a group of symptoms that include hyperactivity and inattention, whereas ADD also refers to a group of multiple symptoms but highlights inattention.

What symptoms go along with ADHD?

Most people think of ADHD as having a hard time focusing or being unable to curb your impulsivity or hyperactivity, but many people might not identify with either of these. ADHD is about “executive function,” a term that describes the “control center” of your brain – the part that helps you hone in/out or start/stop. When executive function is affected, it can affect any part of the processes in your brain that helps you get things done, like thinking of a task, organizing it in your mind, starting the task, being able to follow through with focus, and to complete the final parts. Someone with ADHD can have trouble in any of these areas, but not necessarily all of them. One surprising fact is that ADHD significantly affects your anxiety and mood. The “control center” of your brain also affects your ability to regulate your emotions, so ADHD can make people irritable, get angry quickly, have mood swings, or have a hard time controlling anxiety. Since ADHD affects the “control center,” it also affects impulsivity and addictive behaviors. A person with ADHD may make more impulsive choices, act recklessly, or even have problems with addiction. However, each person is different and the parts of their executive function that are affected varies so each person’s ADHD can look different.

How is it diagnosed?

Some people believe that you need testing to determine if you have ADHD, but that’s not exactly true. Testing sometimes can give you more data points to see if the ADHD picture fits, but it’s not necessary for the diagnosis. A psychiatrist, nurse practitioner, neurologist, or even an internist can diagnose ADHD based on asking you questions about your past and present symptoms. ADHD starts early in life and continues, even if the types of symptoms change over time. A diagnosis depends on seeing a pattern of symptoms that have existed continuously in someone’s life.

How is it treated?

For  many conditions, lifestyle changes or strategies are recommended before medications are started, but in the case of ADHD that’s more than mild, the stimulant medicines work so well and easily that medication can often be the first line treatment. For those who want to avoid medication, there are definitely lifestyle changes and strategies that can be taught and they will help, but in the case of ADHD, they can’t help as effectively as medication. In our practice, we find the most success in combining medication with other approaches.

Can you get addicted to the medicine?

Surprising to many people, if you treat ADHD early in life, you actually reduce a person’s risk of substance abuse later in life. If someone is already abusing substances, they may also start abusing their medication, but when ADHD medicine is taken daily in a scheduled way, people don’t get “used” to the dose or start needing higher doses.

Do you “grow out” of ADHD?

The symptoms of ADHD continue through one’s life, but they might come out in different ways. A child might fall behind in school or have a hard time keeping friends, while an adult may go from job to job or experience break-ups or divorce. A child might take risks during activities or be inattentive during these activities, which can then lead to more injuries. On the other hand, an adult might have a higher chance of getting into a car accident. The core symptoms usually continue through life, but the way they manifest is different.

Why are femme-/female-identified people under-diagnosed?

Femme-/female-identified people often do not show hyperactivity, and they may be more inattentive, such as daydreaming quietly in class. Since they are less likely to act out, their inattention often gets unnoticed. Untreated ADHD leads to more anxiety and depression, so eventually many of these femme-/female-identified people seek psychiatric care for another condition, at which time their ADHD also gets diagnosed.

What can happen with untreated ADHD?

A child with untreated ADHD may fall behind in school and have trouble with friendships. Family life may also suffer. Untreated ADHD can increase strain between parents and children. Parents often blame themselves when they can’t communicate with their child. The sense of losing control can be very frustrating. Teenagers with untreated ADHD are at increased risk for driving accidents. Adults with untreated ADHD have higher rates of divorce and job loss, compared with the general population. Luckily, safe and effective treatments are available, which can help children and adults help control the symptoms of ADHD and prevent unwanted consequences.

What if my ADHD doesn’t interfere much with my life?

Many people have mild symptoms, and those often don’t require medication or much treatment. Still, since ADHD often occurs alongside depression or anxiety, you still may be at higher risk for developing those conditions. Being on the look-out for areas that do interfere with your wellbeing can help you identify areas you can work on with your therapist. We all have mental health, and we can all work on strengthening it.

 

Get started with your care today! Schedule a visit online or let us help you figure out the right fit.