September 07, 2020

Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) affects millions of children. However, it’s not just kids who live with ADHD; an estimated eight to nine million adults in the United States (roughly 4.4%) are diagnosed with it. There are three different types of ADHD: Complete, Predominately Inattentive, and  Hyperactive-Impulsive.  Often  the  term “ADD” is used as a catchall for all three subtypes.

Three core characteristics are used to identify ADHD:

  • Distractibility   (unable   to   give   sustained attention to a task)
  • Impulsivity (unable to delay gratification)
  • Hyperactivity (unable to be still - a physical restlessness)

Just because you experience these behaviors doesn’t mean you have ADHD. These must be sustained characteristics creating difficulty in at least two areas of life such as school, work, home, and relationships.


Different people experience ADHD in different ways.  One-third of diagnosed individuals don’t experience  any  hyperactive  behavior.  Others struggle with distractibility symptoms.

Distractibility Symptoms:

  • Fails to give attention to details
  • Has difficulty paying attention during tasks or play
  • Doesn’t appear to listen when spoken to directly
  • Struggles with organizing tasks and activities
  • Avoids or dislikes tasks requiring sustained mental effort
  • Fails to follow through on instructions or complete tasks
  • Loses toys, assignments, pencils, books, or other tools needed for tasks
  • Frequently forgetful in daily activities Hyperactivity Symptoms:
  • Fidgets with hands or feet or squirms in seat
  • Leaves seat when it’s expected for them to remain seated
  • Runs  around  or  climbs  in  inappropriate situations
  • Has problems playing or working quietly
  • Acts as if “driven by a motor,” and is often “on the go”
  • Talks excessively Impulsivity Symptoms:
  • Blurts out answers before questions are even completed
  • Shows difficulty waiting their turn
  • Interrupts or intrudes on others (interferes with conversations or games)


Evidence  suggests  ADHD  runs  in  families, usually begins in childhood, and occurs more in boys than girls.

ADHD is a treatable illness. The most effective options are a combination of medication and counseling. A physician will typically prescribe a stimulant, which has proven effective for many people.


If you or a loved one relate to these symptoms, there are services in place to help you. Federal legislation recognizes ADHD as a disability; therefore, reasonable accommodations can be made in the workplace or school.

If you think you have ADHD:

✓ Schedule an appointment for a check-up with your primary care provider.

✓ Talk with your health care providers about treatment options.

✓ Adhere   to   medication   and   treatment regimens prescribed by your doctor.

✓  Ask your physician to suggest a professional specializing in ADHD.

✓  Seek out individual counseling or support groups.


You’re  not  alone,  and  help  is  available. Consider reaching out to your health care provider   and   engaging   other   counseling resources for guidance on next steps.

What steps will you take today to be well and live life more fully?

Want to talk to a counselor today about this? 

Call us at 800-453-7733 and ask for your “Free 15 Minute Phone Consultation" with one of our licensed counselors. We’ll listen, answer questions you may have, and help you plan next steps.

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