Adult ADHD vs Child ADHD: How Are They Different? | cannabisMD

Adult ADHD vs Child ADHD: How Are They Different?

Adult ADHD vs Child ADHD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is the most commonly diagnosed mental disorder in children that can continue into adulthood. The difference between ADHD in children and ADHD in adults are the symptoms. Although most adults are diagnosed with ADHD from a young age, some can be diagnosed later on in life. However, there are still differences regardless of when they were diagnosed. What is the comparison between symptoms and of the two in each category? To better understand this, it’s important to know the three main symptoms. These are:

  1. Hyperactivity
  2. Impulsiveness
  3. Inattention

Children with ADHD

Children with ADHD may be hyperactive and unable to control their impulses. They may have trouble paying attention. These behaviours disrupt school and home life. It’s more common in boys than it is in girls. It’s usually developed or recognised during early school years when a child begins to have problems paying attention. This is common with both children and adults who suffer from ADHD. They have a similarity in the symptoms. The following symptoms are common in children:

  • Easily distracted
  • Doesn’t follow directions or finish tasks
  • Doesn’t pay attention or listen to details
  • Makes careless mistakes in school projects
  • Forgets about daily activities
  • Loses things regularly
  • Tends to daydream
  • Has difficulty with organizational skills
  • Doesn’t like to do things that require sitting for an extended period

Hyperactivity in Children with ADHD

Hyperactivity is often described as being in constant, continuous motion. Children who suffer from hyperactivity due to ADHD generally show symptoms like:

  • Trouble playing quietly
  • Often squirm, fidget or bounce when sitting
  • Unable to sit in one spot for a long period of time
  • Run and climb excessively, even in inappropriate situations
  • Talk too much
  • Always on the go

Impulsiveness in Children with ADHD

Children with ADHD may come across as rude sometimes. This is because they have difficulties with attitude or behaviour. Impulsiveness can have serious effects on their lives. Certain normal day to day activities is much more difficult for children with ADHD than they are for others, such as:

  • Making and maintain friendships
  • Waiting for his or her turn
  • Giving answers without careful consideration
  • Interrupting others

Adults Who Suffer from ADHD

Adults with ADHD may have difficulties in time management, organization, setting and achieving goals and following social rules and conventions. This makes working very difficult for them. They may also have problems with relationships and self-confidence. Adults who suffer from ADHD are also at a high risk of developing addictions because many end up with very addictive personalities. Adults who suffer from ADHD may:

  • Lose and misplace items needed on an everyday basis, such as keys, money, personal belongings
  • Be forgetful, such as picking up children, taking out the trash and paying bills
  • Leave important duties unfinished
  • Be distracted easily and struggle to complete tasks. They could start another task and forget the original task
  • Have trouble following orders or taking criticism
  • Lack any self-motivation
  • Lose track of time very easily

Hyperactivity In Adults With ADHD

Adults who suffer from hyperactivity due to ADHD generally show symptoms like:

  • Needing constant motion and fidgeting extensively
  • Becoming bored very easily, switching between jobs often
  • Feeling restlessness, have trouble sitting still for extended periods
  • Engaging in dangerous or risky behaviour

Impulsiveness In Adults With ADHD

Adults who suffer from ADHD will often:

  • Spend money impulsively, wreaking havoc on household budgets
  • Participate in risky behaviors, such as driving fast, gambling, unsafe sex
  • Interrupt others during conversations or answer questions before the question has been finished
  • Blurt out opinions or thoughts even if it is hurtful to someone else

What Are The Causes of ADHD?

Researchers do not know what the exact cause of ADHD is. However, scientific research has identified a number of things which can make the condition more likely. They include:

  • Genetics: ADHD tends to run in families.
  • Chemical imbalance: Brain chemicals in people with ADHD may be out of balance.
  • Brain formation: Areas of the brain that control attention are less active in children with ADHD.
  • Lifestyle: Lack of nutrition, smoking and substance abuse like alcohol or drug abuse during pregnancy can affect an unborn child’s brain development.
  • Toxins: Exposure to certain toxins can affect a child’s brain development.
  • A brain injury: Damage to the front of the brain can trigger problems with controlling impulses and emotions.

Treatments for ADHD

Therapeutic treatments focus on helping the patient to understand how their brain works and use that understanding to regulate their behaviour. Specialized education helps children with ADHD learn in a way that makes sense to their unique brains. Having structure and daily activities which are catered to their needs can help children with ADHD significantly.

Social skills training can teach behaviours, such as taking turns and sharingPsychotherapy or counselling can help adults with ADHD learn better ways to handle their emotions and frustration. It can also help improve their self-esteem or confidence in social situations, which is something that most of them struggle with and are very conscious of. There is a range of treatment options for children and adults alike who have been diagnosed with ADHD.

  1. ADHD Medication: Many signs or symptoms of ADHD can be managed through medication and therapy.
  2. Stimulant medications: Can help to control impulsive behavior and hyperactivity and improve attention span. They include the likes of, Dexmethylphenidate (Focalin), Dextroamphetamine (Adderall, Dexedrine and Lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse)
  3. Nonstimulant medications may be prescribed to children who are over the age of 6. These include: Atomoxetine (Strattera), Clonidine (Kapvay) andGuanfacine (Intuniv)

Many people with ADHD are able to go about their daily lives with a high quality of life if they are receiving the proper treatments. Treatment at an early age can be life-changing for those with ADHD. Many adults will struggle throughout their lives because they didn’t receive the right treatment when they were children.

Similarly, children with ADHD who receive high-quality treatment early on are more likely to go on to live normal lives.Some children who have been diagnosed with ADHD from a young age suffer fewer symptoms when they reach adulthood. Some may even reduce their intake of medications. If you feel that you are showing symptoms of ADHD, it’s important that you constant your doctor, or talk to a medical professional.

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