Causes and Symptoms of Adult ADHD
What is adult ADHD, and what is the difference between this form of the disorder and that which affects children? Interestingly enough, it’s not different at all: the causes are the same and ADHD is considered to be the same disorder whether it occurs in an adult or a child.
Although a great deal of headway has been made into researching the causes of ADHD, there are still no concrete answers. The prevailing theory is that neurotransmitter activity is abnormal in people with this disorder. According to this theory, the neurotransmitters dopamine and norepinephrine are cleared from the brain’s synapses more quickly than normal, which means there is less available for use in the brain.
As a result of the reduction in available dopamine and norepinephrine, people with ADHD tend to display specific patterns of symptoms and behaviors. It is thought that the too-rapid clearance of dopamine and norepinephrine is the direct cause of the ADHD individual’s reduced ability to focus and control impulsive behavior.
Common adult ADHD symptoms include the following:
- Easily bored or frustrated
- Poor memory and organizational skills, including difficulty multi-tasking
- Poor time-management and tendency to procrastinate
- Impatient, and easily becomes angry or irritable
- Poor impulse control, including tendency to make and act on snap decisions, and a tendency to say things that are socially inappropriate
The effects of these symptoms on the lives of adults with the disorder can vary. Some adults have a poor work history and are unable to maintain interest in a job or perform well at work. Meanwhile, others are able to find work that is both rewarding and stimulating, enabling them to perform well.
Personal relationships are often difficult, due to emotional issues as a result of poor self-esteem and self-image, as well as the effects of irritability, anger, and reduced tolerance in a relationship. Due to poor impulse control and a tendency towards inappropriate behavior, adults with ADHD often have difficulty with social interactions.