Medical school was not easy but I managed it just fine. I went through a residency on very little sleep and had no problem taking good care of my patients, passing my Boards, getting married and having a baby. I remembered the birthdays and special events of family and friends and never missed an opportunity to have some fun. Who was that person who was able to do all of that; who had the energy to do all of that? That girl is very clearly gone. I mentioned yesterday that I volunteered to be my daughter’s Girl Scout cookie mom. What a humbling experience. I am sore today from carrying boxes. My will power is shot (she types as Samoa coconut falls in between the keys). And, the icing on the Trefoil is that I have also lost the ability to count. I will, no doubt, lie awake tonight wondering if everyone picked up the right number of Do-Si-Dos. Do I have a real problem or do I just need a real job?
The symptoms of ADHD in adults are similar to those in children but they manifest differently.
1. Adults with ADHD have a difficult time remembering information which can result in the forgetting where they put something, forgetting important events or chronic lateness. (Check the “yes” category for me.)
2. Adults with ADHD have a hard time following directions (check “yes” for my husband) and managing deadlines which can create problems with their jobs.
3. Adults with ADHD have difficulty concentrating or focusing which results in an inability to complete a given task, read a book or handle frustrating or challenging assignments.
4. Adults with ADHD have poor organizational skills resulting in, well … disorganization. (Another “yes” for me.)
5. These symptoms often cause psychological and interpersonal problems. Relationships can be strained, self-esteem is low, anxiety and anger are high. Adults with ADHD complain of chronic boredom and mood swings. Depression and substance abuse are more likely.
As mentioned yesterday, ADHD in adults does not happen spontaneously. There will be a history of an ADHD diagnosis and if not, there will be a childhood history of academic and/or social problems. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and there are therapies that can help. The diagnosis should be made by a mental health professional and not by your spouse.
Given today’s topic, I think it is o.k. to go off on a small tangent. Today, March 1st, is my mother’s birthday. She would be 66 years young today if not for the ovarian cancer that robbed us all. I know time is precious but so is life. Take a moment today to read or review some information about ovarian cancer – the silent killer. There are some additional sources listed if you would like more information.
Tomorrow: Treatment for ADHD in adults