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ADHD or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is a condition with symptoms such as inattentiveness, impulsivity, and hyperactivity. The symptoms differ from person to person. Both children and adults can have ADHD, but symptoms always begin in childhood. Children often display symptoms including fidgeting, being easily distracted, excessive talking and not finishing tasks.


Adults make up about 4% to 5% of  individuals who have ADHD.  Adult ADHD seems to affect men and women equally. Symptoms can include:

  • Chronic boredom

  • Remembering information

  • Poor Organization

  • Difficulty controlling anger

  • Struggles with lateness

  • Forgetfulness

These symptoms can be present in all parts of their lives including family, work and social settings.  These may affect someone a lot, or not so much. They can be problems all of the time or just depend on the situation.  Getting treatment and learning ways to manage ADHD can help. Most people learn to adapt.  Click here to learn more about ADHD.
While experts don’t agree on an age for a first diagnosis of ADHD, they do agree that people don’t suddenly develop it as an adult. That’s why questions about childhood behavior will be relevant.  It will also be important to note if anyone else in the family has ADHD because it does seem like ADHD runs in families.   There is no specific test for ADHD.  Diagnosing is a process that involves gathering a lot of information from multiple sources. The individual, family members, school/work representatives and other caregivers should be involved in assessment.  It will be important to note when symptoms started, and how the behavior affects the person and the rest of their family.
There are three types of ADHD.  Each has different symptoms, and treatments are based on those symptoms.

Inattentive Type

  • Not paying attention to detail
  • Making careless mistakes
  • Failing to pay attention or keep on task
  • Not appearing to listen
  • Difficulty following or understanding instructions
  • Avoiding tasks that involve effort
  • Losing things that are needed to complete tasks

Hyperactive-Impulsive Type

  • Fidgeting or Squirming
  • Getting up often when seated
  • Moving about at inappropriate times
  • Having trouble doing things quietly
  • Talking too much or blurting out answers
  • Interrupting

Combined Type

This is the most common type of ADHD. People with it have symptoms of both inattention and hyperactivity.

 ADHD Treatment 

Treatment for children and teens may include special education programs (IEP or 504 Plans), psychotherapy, and medication. It is important to learn as much as you can about the options and talk them over with your child’s health care provider so you can choose the best fit.  Studies show that treatment with a combination of medication and behavioral therapy is much better than just medication alone.  Behavioral treatment for ADHD includes creating more structure, encouraging routines, and clearly stating expectations.  Social skills training can help a child with ADHD learn behaviors that will help them develop and maintain social relationships. Support groups and parenting skills training can help parents learn tools to best support their child’s needs

Treatment for adults can look very similar and include medication combined with psychotherapy.  Cognitive and behavioral therapy can help with focus, organization, self-esteem and managing relationships.  Relaxation skills (stress management) can be helpful in improving focus and reducing impulsivity.


All Mindly clinicians are fully licensed to practice counseling & psychotherapy in the state of North Carolina.

Stephanie Phillips, LCMHCS, NCC, CCTP
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Brigitte ZylaRoch, LCSW
Stephanie Lucas, LCSWA
Madison Reese, LCMHCA
John von der Lehr, LCSW
Ananya Ranjana, Intern

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