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Could It
Be ADHD?

Do you think you might have ADHD? Does your child, sibling, or parent have it? Maybe some of the information here has you wondering, “Could it be…?” Maybe it’s time to find out.

ADHD Myths & Facts

MYTH: I don’t have all the symptoms of ADHD, so I can’t have it.

FACT:

You don’t have to display all the symptoms of ADHD to be diagnosed with it. For example, some people may present with only inattentive symptoms of ADHD and may not show any signs of hyperactivity or impulsivity. Only a trained doctor or mental health professional can determine whether or not you have ADHD.

MYTH: ADHD is over-diagnosed because everyone has difficulty paying attention and being restless at times.

FACT:

It is a common public misconception that ADHD is over-diagnosed, often reinforced by the media. In fact, the prevalence of ADHD (the percentage of people that have it) has remained the same over the past 30 years. Furthermore, less than 20% of adults who have ADHD are currently diagnosed and/or receiving treatment from a psychiatrist.

Diagnosis is a complex process that is made carefully by a trained doctor or mental health professional. Although many people exhibit some of the symptoms some of the time, people with ADHD experience many more of the symptoms, more often, and to a greater extent. The symptoms must be considered an impairment to daily functioning, be recognized in more than one setting, and persist for at least 6 months for a diagnosis to occur.

MYTH: ADHD only occurs in boys.

FACT:

The disorder occurs in both boys and girls,, although boys are four to nine times more likely to be diagnosed. Girls are more prone to inattentive type ADHD (demonstrating disorganized and unfocused behaviour), which more often goes unnoticed compared to the disruptive, impulsive conduct typically seen in boys with ADHD. Girls with ADHD also tend to have higher rates of overall distress, anxiety, and depression compared to boys with ADHD.

MYTH: ADHD is just a kids’ disorder. Eventually, you outgrow it.

FACT:

While it’s true that some ADHD symptoms subside or change over time, the majority of children with ADHD will continue to experience the symptom challenges as adults. If you’ve only just realized that you might have ADHD, it’s not too late to get treatment for it!

MYTH: People with ADHD are just lazy.

FACT:

Statements like this can be hurtful to people with ADHD. It may help to know that ADHD is not something that can be turned on or off at will. There are actual differences in the way the brains of people with ADHD work, and this is what leads to inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsiveness.

MYTH: People with ADHD simply don’t want to focus or complete tasks that they don’t enjoy.

FACT:

People with ADHD find it difficult to regulate their attention. They are not just distracted or absentminded. Others may misconstrue the ability of someone with ADHD to “hyper focus” on stimulating activities (like video games) or creative activities (such as Lego or drawing) for hours as an example that the person can focus but lacks willpower. Being unable to break or prioritize focus is a core symptom of ADHD.

How Do You Know If It Could Really Be ADHD?

Learning about ADHD, and how to recognize some of the signs and symptoms, is the first step in being able to answer the question “Could it be ADHD?”

Learn more about ADHD

Understand Your Treatment Options

Wondering what happens next when you know that it’s ADHD? Find out more about the different treatment options and support available.

Take steps to make a plan

Strategies for Living with ADHD

Learning effective strategies to manage your ADHD is possible. Improving key areas of your overall health and lifestyle, such as getting more sleep, can also make a big difference.

Take Action