Adult ADHD Focused Therapy
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (commonly known as ADHD) is a condition that we might traditionally associate with children and teenagers. However, it is also present in adulthood, often concealed through masking, compensatory strategies, or misdiagnosis.
You may be aware of the term ‘attention-deficit disorder’ (ADD), however, this is generally no longer used. The criteria for ADHD changed to include the subtypes to include what was previously known as ADD (predominantly inattentive presentation).
Though everybody’s experience is unique, clients will often describe their experience of ADHD as being constantly ‘switched on’. Whilst this ‘energy’ might be valuable in many ways, bringing enthusiasm and motivation, it can also be unsustainable long-term, resulting in prolonged episodes of anxiety, burn-out and depression. Challenges with executive functioning: memory, attention and time management can result in difficulties in the world of work, a struggle to maintain consistency around interests, activities and people, as well as a tendency toward ‘reactivity’ in relationships.
As a therapist and someone who has an ADHD diagnosis myself, I can appreciate some of the challenges you might have faced. However, I also want to emphasise that, in my experience, sustained change can happen with or without the help of medication.
Traditionally therapeutic support has focused on behavioural adaptations, time management, organisational strategies and cognitive restructuring. Though useful, this is only a small part of the puzzle. I believe that true and sustained change happens through the ability to understand, appreciate and regulate the nervous system. From there, we can develop the embodied capacity to turn the ‘switch’ on or off as and when required.
Signs of Adult ADHD:
- lack of attention to detail
- starting new tasks before finishing existing ones
- poor organisational skills
- difficulty focusing and prioritising
- often losing/misplacing things
- often forgetting things
- often interrupting other people’s conversations
- mood swings and irritability
- difficulty coping with stress
- risky behaviour
If you’re an adult and you think you have ADHD and would like a diagnosis, your doctor will talk to you about your symptoms and may refer you for an assessment; alternatively, you can search online for a private assessor.
Please note that I am not appropriately qualified to provide a formal diagnosis. However, a formal diagnosis is not required to access therapy.
ADDISS (ADHD) Information Services – www.addiss.co.uk