Though previously regarded as a childhood diagnosis, ADHD can continue throughout adulthood.
Untreated adults with ADHD often have chaotic life-styles, may appear to be disorganized and may rely on non-prescribed drugs and alcohol to get by. They often have such associated psychiatric comorbidities as depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, substance abuse, or a learning disability. A diagnosis of ADHD may offer adults insight into their behaviors and allow patients to become more aware and seek help with coping and treatment strategies.
There is controversy amongst experts on whether ADHD persists into adulthood. Only recognized as occurring in adults in 1978, it is currently not addressed separately. Obstacles that clinicians face when assessing adults who may have ADHD include developmentally inappropriate diagnostic criteria, age-related changes, comorbidities and the possibility that high intelligence or situational factors can mask ADHD symptoms.
The most common symptoms of ADHD are:
Impulsiveness: acting before thinking of consequences, jumping from one activity to another, disorganization, tendency to interrupt other peoples' conversations.
Hyperactivity: restlessness, often characterized by an inability to sit still, fidgeting, squirminess, climbing on things, restless sleep.
Inattention: easily distracted, day-dreaming, not finishing work, difficulty listening, and motor clumsiness.
A specific cause of ADHD is not known. There are, however, a number of factors that may contribute to ADHD including genetics, diet and social and physical environments.
Twin studies indicate that the disorder is highly heritable and that genetics are a factor in about 75% of ADHD cases. Hyperactivity also seems to be primarily a genetic condition; however, other causes do have an effect.
Twin studies to date have also suggested that approximately 9% to 20% of the variance in hyperactive-impulsive-inattentive behavior or ADHD symptoms can be attributed to nonshared environmental (nongenetic) factors.
Environmental factors implicated include alcohol and tobacco smoke exposure during pregnancy and environmental exposure to lead in very early life.The relation of smoking to ADHD could be due to nicotine causing hypoxia (lack of oxygen) to the fetus in utero. It could also be that women with ADHD are more likely to smoke and therefore, due to the strong genetic component of ADHD, are more likely to have children with ADHD. Complications during pregnancy and birth—including premature birth—might also play a role.
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) reviewed the literature on the association between food additives and hyperactivity and concluded that there is only limited evidence of an association between the intake of additives and activity and attention and then only in some children studied. They further indicated that the effects reported in the study were not consistent for the two age groups and for the two food additive mixtures used in the study.Others have suggested a trial of removing additives from the diet for children with ADHD as it is harmless and might be helpful.
There is no compelling evidence that social factors alone can cause ADHD. However, many researchers believe that relationships with caregivers have a profound effect on attentional and self-regulatory abilities. A study of foster children found that a high number of them had symptoms closely resembling ADHD, while other researchers have found behavior typical of ADHD in children who have suffered violence and emotional abuse. Furthermore, Complex Post Traumatic Stress Disorder can result in attention problems that can look like ADHD. ADHD is also considered a contributing factor to Sensory Integration Disorders.
So do you think I have ADHD??
How bout you? Do you get to experience the symptoms too?
Tara, patingin tayo ahaha!!