Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD) are a neurobiological disorder. It is characterized by developmentally inappropriate impulsivity, inattention, and in some cases, hyperactivity. Although individuals with ADHD can be very successful in life, without appropriate identification and treatment, ADHD can have serious consequences. These consequences may include school failure, depression, conduct disorder, failed relationships, and substance abuse. Early identification and treatment are extremely important.
Until recent years, it was believed that children outgrew ADHD in adolescence. This is because hyperactivity often diminishes during the teen years. However, it is now known that many symptoms continue into adulthood. If the disorder goes undiagnosed or untreated during adulthood, individuals may have trouble at work and in relationships, as well as emotional difficulties such as anxiety and depression.
Because everyone shows signs of these behaviors at one time or another, the guidelines for determining whether a person has ADHD are very specific. In children, the symptoms must be more frequent or severe than in other children of the same age. In adults, the symptoms must be present since childhood and affect one’s ability to function in daily life. These behaviors must create significant difficulty in at least two areas of life, such as home, social settings, school, or work.
- Makes logical connections between personal wants and needs across a variety of adult life decisions.
- More self-aware of how their behavior affects the positive development of peer relationships. Significant reductions of “off the wall” comments unrelated to the conversation or circumstances.
- Awareness and improved performance in commonly accepted and practiced social graces.
- Less avoidance-type behaviors due to increased practice and personal responsibility in dealing effectively with the perceived risks of “failing.”
- Can make informed career planning decisions by utilizing a system of tools/methods that recognize & build on individual assets and manage functional limitations.
- Demonstrates independent ability to identify, enroll, and complete college or career programming with passing grades/scores.
- Able to conduct an independent job search, interview, accept and retain competitive employment for at least 120 continuous days.
- Comprehends and appreciates that employers expect all employees to perform certain job functions in specific ways.
- Understands and complies with the policy/procedure demands of a particular work setting.
- Successfully lived on own, managed daily tasks of independent living, and begin to support themselves financially.
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