Mental Health

sec_arr Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

In adults, ADHD presents as a persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning. The condition occurs in 2.5% of adults with a 1.6:1 male to female ratio. Persons with ADHD experience difficulty maintaining focus and persistence. They may appear disorganized. Motor activity may be excessive (hyperactivity). They may appear restless, and their hyperactivity may distress others. Impulsivity refers to the tendency to take action without suitable forethought – may have high potential to harm the individual. This can manifest socially through intrusiveness and interruption of others. Hasty decision-making without consideration of long-term consequences may also reflect impulsivity, and can affect multiple domains of function.

The risk of suicide may be increased in ADHD patients. A 2016 study using data from the adult psychiatric morbidity study showed odds ratios of 1.6 for lifetime suicidal ideation.34A 2012 review of 25 studies found a positive relationship between ADHD and risk to self.35

Some diagnostic criteria may require consultation with collateral sources of information such as friends, co-workers, and/or family members. Two specific examples are: first, the requirement that several symptoms arise before age 12; and second, the requirement that symptoms must also manifest themselves in more than one setting.