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The Tragedy of Undiagnosed ADHD

Have you ever found yourself in a classroom, and while struggling to pay attention, you experience a “white out?”  You are aware but hear nothing and see only white? This is one type of  a block. Has this happened during a conversation, where you feel lost, not listening to a word, and unable to respond? When reading, do you have to repeat the same lines repeatedly because you cannot focus?  Do you “skim and scan” without even reading because you cannot remember what you read?  These are all blocks.  When these scenarios combine, and seem descriptive of your own experiences, you may have hyperactivity and, perhaps, ADHD, even if you are not actively aware of it.

ADHD is a complex disorder, with abnormal levels of impulsivity and hyperactivity.  People might not realize it, but it is one of the most underdiagnosed and untreated neuropsychiatric conditions.  Conversely, it is perhaps the most researched and understood psychiatric disorder.  And yet, this condition is often minimalized, rationalized as an immaturity in otherwise healthy children. Those who casually dismiss ADHD have rarely experienced it themselves, and do not understand that it is a sign of someone who may be chronically under-stimulated or lack focus.

People with ADHD show signs of impulsivity, hyperactivity, and inattention, all of which can persist into adulthood. Upon a conclusive diagnosis, therapy is the best tool to address it.

People with ADHD are unusually spontaneous and have shorter attention spans. This makes the achievement of goals difficult to achieve, in studies, at work, or in relationships. Children  with ADHD can lag behind their peers, garnering poor grades, feeling self-pity, both of which can lead to other mental health issues.

Controlling emotions is difficult and may lead to social conflicts, such as not sharing toys, or inappropriate responses to others.  Without medication or therapy, children with ADHD face real difficulty in making friends, leading to loneliness and depression.

The impulsive nature of ADHA, when undiagnosed or untreated, increases the chances of injury in children who have it.

Risks in adults:  People with undiagnosed ADHD are consistently inconsistent. Securing a job and keeping it can be a great challenge.  Because of behavioral issues, they are not able to meet deadlines, stay organized, keep good ties with co-workers, or accept criticism.  Undiagnosed/untreated ADHD may also cause relationship problems.  People with ADHD tend to be more argumentative than others and can have problems in their intimate relationships.

Why Is Therapy Important?  Different therapeutic options are available, often combined with  medication, cognitive behavioral therapy, and counseling.  These approach those with ADHD to move forward, stay motivated, and improve critical thinking skills, thus building confidence and minimizing feelings of failure and hopelessness.

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