Are you habitually disorganised, inattentive and impulsive? Do you easily get distracted all the time? If you say yes to all and everything already gets in the way with how you get on with other people or with how you perform at work, you may be suffering from Adult ADHD.
ADHD (ATTENTION-DEFICIT/HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER) refers to a condition present from childhood and with clear problems presenting within the areas of attention, (hyper) activity, and/or impulsiveness. It’s known as a child psychiatric disorder which often progresses into adulthood.
Adults with ADHD are easily preoccupied, having poor planning and organisational abilities. They suffer mood fluctuations and are prone to temper outbursts. They seek out excitement and risks in order to be able to concentrate, leading their attention towards using drugs and consuming alcohol. They can also be characterised as unwary and impatient. Furthermore, disorders such as nervousness, despair, dependence, among others, result in eventually having problems with their activities at school, at work, and even establishing relationships.
CAUSES OF ADULT ADHD
- Strong genetic factors are deliberated as the main risk factor for ADHD
- Considered as congenital neurobiological disorder
- ADHD is now considered a multifactorial determined condition with both genetic and environmental roots.
- A disorder with a strong genetic component
- With a small percentage of ADHD may be caused by consuming alcohol and smoking during pregnancy, or through a brain trauma or exposure to lead or other toxins
SYMPTOMS OF ADULT ADHD
INATTENTION which has continued for at least six months:
- Poor attention to details or makes careless mistakes
- Often has difficulty sustaining attention
- Doesn’t listen well
- Trouble following through on commitments
- Aversion on activities that involves sustained mental effort
- Tends to lose things
- Easily distracted
HYPERACTIVITY which has continued for at least six months:
- Has trouble sitting still
- Feels restless
- Always on the go
- Overly talkative
IMPULSITIVITY which has continued for at least six months:
- Interrupts conversations
- Has difficulty waiting for his/her turn
- Blurts out answers before questions have been finished
TREATMENT OF ADULT ADHD
The most active and safe treatment intervention in ADHD is through medicating stimulant drugs. Based on studies, it has a reliable effectivity of 50–70 % of both children and adults with ADHD as long as they are taken consistently.
Stimulant drugs act as inhibitors in ADHD resulting in greater peace, overview, caution, and a more stable mood. Research shows that stimulant drugs are very effective and safe for children, adolescents, and adults. It also noted that these medications were non-addictive as long as they are taken appropriately and monitored by the doctor.
Patient support groups
Participation in a community or group activities fosters a healthy environment for an adult diagnosed with ADHD.
Coaching / cognitive therapy
Coaching provides support to adults with ADHD so that they can get their practical goals, such as in their work or education. In addition to the medication, cognitive behavioural therapy is also used to improve everyday useful skills and to address problems such as escaping behaviour and patients’ negative opinions of themselves.
Coaching is a method that enables the health-care professionals to perform a directive approach to ADHD patients and their assessment is done through submission of homework. Coaching also dedicates a great deal of attention to frequently recurring problems such as the disappointment, an undesirable self-image, and gloomy complaints that may be the result of ADHD. It also offers attention to relationship, social and financial problems, and to the acceptance of the diagnosis. Individual treatment also covers ADHD-related problems.
Psychotherapy centres more on the total functioning of the patient, and suggestive assessment. It involves stress management and relaxation techniques such as exercise. Diet modification has been said to alleviate some symptoms of hyperactivity.