for Adult ADD/ADHD-The Fundamentals You Need to Know
Deficit Disorder (ADD) is the term used for a neurological condition
marked by difficulties with attention and concentration and usually
difficulties with self-control and overactivity or restlessness. It is
also known as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) because
many individuals with ADD are or were overactive and impulsive. About
5% of all people have ADD.
ADD is recognized by mental health professionals as one of the most
common disorders of childhood, and was previously thought to resolve
in adolescence. Over the past decade there has been a growing
awareness that for many if not most individuals with ADD it persists
into adulthood. Effective treatment for adult ADD is a relatively new
area of study.
ADD affects many aspects of life. It affects academic and vocational
success, personal and family relationships, emotions and self-esteem.
ADD individuals often share a number of positive qualities such as
creativity, spontaneity, inventiveness, and sensitivity to others. But
it also leads to disorganization, procrastination, difficulty with
task completion, and feeling overwhelmed. The Nature of ADD.
ADD is commonly described as a disorder consisting of chronic
difficulties in the areas of attention/concentration, impulsivity, and
overactivity. In addition to these "core" symptoms, other symptoms and
problems include distractibility, forgetfulness, lack of persistence
with tasks, frequent boredom, failure to delay speech or action when
appropriate, fidgetiness, restlessness, being "always on the go,"
disorganization, difficulty coping with stressful situations, temper
outbursts, and frequently changing moods. Not every ADD individual
displays all these symptoms. Some ADD individuals have mainly the
attentional difficulties and do not have the overactivity and
impulsivity. These symptoms frequently lead to low self-esteem,
problems with planning and executing tasks, a disorganized lifestyle,
poor problem-solving skills, frequent job or relationship changes,
social and relationship difficulties, a chronic pattern of
underachievement, and/or inconsistency in work production and
performance. Children often display problems with behavior,
socialization, and school performance. Many individuals with ADD may
have a coexisting problem such as anxiety or depression, a learning
disability, or drug/alcohol abuse. It may be that they focus on and
seek help for this problem, not recognizing its link to ADD. Causes
ADD is widely recognized among experts as having
a biological, neurological basis. It is currently understood as the
result of a part or parts of the brain not regulating self-control of
attention, impulses, and activity level as it should, likely due in
part to a lack of certain neurochemicals. While it is usually an
inherited condition, it may be exacerbated by environmental and other
factors such as parenting, adversity, or educational environment.
ADD individuals are generally born with ADD. It usually becomes
manifest in early childhood. Often it becomes more apparent during
elementary school years because of the demands of school experience.
For some individuals it may not become apparent until later in life.
During adolescence changes in the ADD manifestation often occur. It
may be less outwardly obvious, especially when hyperactivity
diminishes. For some individuals, it seems to end. For the majority,
it usually continues to impact in many ways throughout adulthood,
although greater control may be achieved in various ways. Diagnosis
#2 Help for Adult ADD/ADHD
William Morgan, Psy.D. is a psychologist and ADD
coach in the greater Philadelphia area. For more information on his
e-book TIPS ON THE MANAGEMENT OF ADULT ADD go to
or visit his website at
other helpful resources.
Information and webpage by
Licensed Psychologist Ph.D. Candidate
(Health and Geriatric Psychologist)
Page on Google Plus
Diagnosis - DSM-IV
Diagnosis and Codes: Alphabetical and ADHD Medication