Many times doctors tell people that a child will “grow out of his Attention Deficit Disorder.” While that may be the case for some people, a significant number of people do not grow out of this neurological difference. It persists into adulthood. A longitudinal study conducted by the Mayo Clinic on children from Rochester, New York found that 29 percent of the children continued to have ADD as adults. The National Institutes for Mental Health (NIMH) estimates that over four percent of the adult population has ADD. Attention Deficit Disorder can seriously impact many areas of adult life.
Jobs A study found in the National Center for Biotechnology Information found that adults with ADD have more unemployment and underemployment than the controls in the study. They also observed that low frustration tolerance, irritability, and accidents lowered the overall workplace productivity of people with Attention Deficit Disorder. For adults to have a better workplace experience, they need to match their abilities and interests to the jobs that they take. Controlling the work environment, to the greatest extent possible, is also helpful in maintaining employment.
Running a household and bills Inattention can be devastating for running a household and paying bills. Chores and repairs that need to get done get shoved aside until they cause a crisis. One way to prevent the household crises is to purchase maintenance plans. Another is to subscribe to a listing of reputable handymen. Angie’s List can help with this.
Putting off paying bills impacts credit reports. When prospective employers check credit reports, these credit checks can affect employment possibilities. A bad credit report also causes people to pay higher amounts of money to borrow money or have a credit card. Higher interest rates translate to more money spent for using credit. Using an online banking bill payer can be helpful. This allows the householder to pay bills and have the bank submit the payment electronically or to mail it out to creditors. It also allows you to schedule bills that come every month.
Relationships need attention to grow and be successful. Especially in marriage, you need to nurture the relationship. While ADD brings distractibility and inattention, it can also produce natural energy and creativity for a marriage. Partners need to discuss their beliefs and values. When couples don’t have a common set of beliefs and values, they need to respect each other’s needs and feelings. Mutual kindness goes a long way toward smoothing your shared path.
Parenting can be especially difficult when you have ADD. Parents need to provide consistency, which is difficult when a person has problems with attention and focus. Many parents who have Attention Deficit Disorder also have children who have ADD. These kids need a high level of structure to thrive, and it is hard for parents with inattention and focus problems to give them that necessary structure. A schedule can help. So can check-off sheets.
What can an adult do to help with their ADD? Locate a health care provider who understands adult Attention Deficit Disorder. Find a medication and therapeutic intervention that works for you. Eat foods that are not overly processed and have a lot of nutritional value. Put exercise into your life. Discover a pleasurable way to increase your focus. This might be through meditation, martial arts, music, or some other type of activity that can naturally help to stimulate your ability to concentrate. Finally, get plenty of sleep. Attention Deficit Disorder is not just a disorder that affects children. Many aspects of adult life are also impacted. You can’t just ignore it and hope that it will go away. Take steps to control or ameliorate the negative symptoms of ADD. That can improve your life.
Many adults who have learned to manage the negative symptoms of ADD and use the positive attributes that come with having ADD are very successful. Dr. Edward Hallowell is a great example of a person who lets his ADD work for him. His book is an outstanding reference for people who want to learn more about all aspects of ADD. I highly recommend it.
Delivered from Distraction: Getting the Most out of Life with Attention Deficit Disorder
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