5 Symptoms of ADHD

In order to be diagnosed with ADHD, you must demonstrate certain symptoms over a six month period or longer. Since ADHD can often be confused with similar health conditions such as ADD, it’s important to understand these symptoms and how they impact everyday life. It’s also important to note that symptoms are often broken out into three different types: inattention and hyperactivity, and impulsivity.

Keep reading to learn about the top 5 symptoms of ADHD.

  1. Inattention

This symptom often manifests itself when a child is old enough to go to school. Adults with ADHD are also more likely to notice the symptom when they’re at work or at a social function. Inattention is all about a lack of focus and procrastination. Maybe you’re unable to focus on a task at work or put it aside to work on at a later time. Inattention can also cause you to be disorganized and unable to remember details. Those who suffer from inattention often also have to deal with:

  • Forgetfulness (ie. missed appointments)
  • Trouble staying on topic
  • Careless mistakes
  • Not following social rules and cues
  • Easily distracted

If you’re finding it hard to focus at work or at school and the symptom has been ongoing for months, you want to schedule an appointment with a doctor to be evaluated and properly diagnosed.

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  1. Hyperactivity

Symptoms of hyperactivity are extremely common in younger children though adults can suffer from the same symptoms. This symptom can be hard to pinpoint since we all know children can be full of energy and quite rambunctious, but there’s a difference between having energy and being hyperactive.

Children who are hyperactive aren’t fans of doing quiet things, such as playing alone or reading a book. These children also tend to squirm and fidget when seated. In fact, most prepare to get up frequently to run around. Hyperactivity causes people to be constantly in motion. It can also make one extremely chatty.

In adults, hyperactivity transforms into restlessness. This can cause feelings of having to be on the move as well as the inability to relax and sleep at night.

  1. Impulsivity

We all have those days when we make an impulsive decision, like buying new clothes or a new handbag that we’ve wanted for months. In those with ADHD, impulsivity is a daily occurrence. Impulsivity often causes impatience and the inability to wait before reacting or talking.

Impulsivity can be an issue for both children and adults, especially if impulsive actions are misinterpreted as being rude or disruptive. Being impulsive can often cause work and social problems.

Being impulsive can also cause people to make risky decisions without thinking through the consequences. Children may climb over something dangerous or an adult may make an impulsive comment that could be hurtful.

  1. Relationship & Social Issues

Adults who suffer from ADHD often have a hard time maintaining relationships. This is because symptoms can cause poor listening skills and the inability to honor commitments because of a lack of organization and the inability to remember details. If you’ve noticed that your relationships have started to become more frustrating for you and your partner, you may want to consider the underlying problem.

Do you often forget about plans made with your significant other? Are you known to make impulsive comments and behaviors before thinking things through? These actions all point towards symptoms of ADHD.

  1. Inability to Prioritize

Have you ever spent hours on a highly insignificant task? Do you find it hard to meet deadlines, even for big obligations? Are you unable to determine which tasks at work at most important? The inability to prioritize is quite common in adults with ADHD, though symptoms can also be found in children. Children with ADHD may be unwilling to take time to do homework and instead would rather run around and play.

Prioritizing issues can be problematic at work, at home, and in your social life. If you’re known to procrastinate or have issues with prioritizing, you may want to seek a diagnosis from a doctor.

Getting Diagnosed

ADHD is a hard diagnosis to make because many of the symptoms are symptoms of other conditions like substance abuse and depression. Since there’s no one physical or medical test that can pinpoint ADHD, it’s important to keep track of your symptoms and how they impact your daily life. Your doctor will examine these symptoms and determine if you suffer from ADHD or another health issue. If diagnosed with ADHD, be sure to work closely with your doctor to determine the best treatment option. Ask about Vyvanse patient assistance so that your medication costs can be much more affordable.

While medication helps, there are also things you can do at home and at work to minimize symptoms. Take time to organize your home and desk. Stick to a strict schedule. Take notes in multiple places so that you can remember deadlines and upcoming events.


Suffering from ADHD doesn’t have to be a health condition that impacts your life forever. If you deal with these symptoms on a daily basis, don’t wait to schedule an appointment with a doctor. With the right medication, you can experience the more focused and relaxed side of you.

About the author

Ross Cameron

Ross Cameron

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