How to Know If You Have ADHD
Getting an accurate ADHD diagnosis is the first step to treatment and a better life. There is no one test that will diagnose ADHD, but it is possible to determine whether or not you have the disorder by discussing your symptoms with a doctor or a health care professional. The symptoms can look similar to many other problems.
ADHD is a behavioral disorder that can impair an individual’s ability to function in many areas of their life. The symptoms can be mild or severe, and vary from person to person. People with ADHD have problems paying attention, making decisions, staying organized, relaxing, and completing tasks. They may also have impulsivity, sleep problems, or anxiety.
A proper diagnosis of ADHD can help you find effective treatment, improve your daily life, and increase your confidence. Your health professional will examine your medical and psychiatric history, and will ask you questions to determine whether or not you have ADHD. He or she will use a checklist of symptoms to diagnose you, and may also perform a physical examination to rule out other causes of your symptoms.
During the clinical interview, the health care professional will ask you questions about your psychiatric history, your life, and your symptoms. You will also have to discuss the issues that led you to seek evaluation. For example, you may have been depressed, had trouble paying bills, or had problems with your spouse. You will also have to discuss any physical problems that you may have, such as muscle tension or insomnia.
After a thorough evaluation, the health care professional will determine the best course of treatment for you. Treatment may involve medication, therapy, or a combination of treatments. ADHD can be treated effectively, but it takes patience and effort to manage the symptoms. You may want to practice some of the techniques that you learn in therapy to improve your self-control and self-esteem.
Some people have ADHD when they are young, while others have more serious symptoms later in life. Adults can also have a diagnosis if they had ADHD as a child, but forget about it when they are grown up. However, if you have symptoms that have been present for more than six months, you should make an appointment to talk with a health care professional.
Getting an accurate diagnosis can help you take steps to control your symptoms and improve your life. Ask your health care professional for a list of qualified professionals that can help you diagnose and treat your ADHD. You can also ask your primary care provider for a referral to a mental health professional, or contact an ADHD support group.
ADHD symptoms can be confused with many other medical and emotional issues, so be sure to ask your health care provider if there is any reason to be concerned about your symptoms. You may want to ask your family, friends, or teachers if they know of a qualified professional who can help you.
Psychologist Dr. Jen Yip has tips on keeping yourself safe and informed.