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ADHD in Adults

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Apr 2, 2024.

What is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)?

ADHD is a condition that affects behavior. You may be overactive and have a short attention span. ADHD interferes with how you function in your daily activities at work, school, or home. ADHD may also cause you to have problems getting along with other people.

What increases my risk for ADHD?

ADHD usually starts during childhood and may continue into adulthood. The following may increase your risk for ADHD:

What are the signs and symptoms of ADHD?

ADHD has 2 main types, based on signs and symptoms. You may have a combination of the 2 main types. A combination is the most common type of ADHD. You may do any of the following:

How is ADHD diagnosed?

Healthcare providers use a guide to diagnose ADHD. The symptoms must be present for at least 6 months and not be caused by other problems. These symptoms must be severe enough to cause problems in 2 or more settings. These setting include those at home, work, or school. Some symptoms must be present since you were a child. ADHD is usually diagnosed during childhood. You may have had some behavior or concentration problems that were mild as a child but harder to control as an adult. Tell your healthcare provider about any symptoms you had as a child or new or worsening symptoms as an adult. These details can help your healthcare provider create a treatment plan to help you.

How is ADHD treated?

The goal of treatment is to help you learn how to control your behavior. A combination of therapy and medication is usually most effective for treating ADHD. You may need any of the following:

Treatment options

The following list of medications are related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options

What can I do to manage ADHD?

Call your local emergency number (911 in the US) if:

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I call my doctor?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.