Can I Be Diagnosed with ADHD as an adult or only as a child?
Yes, you can be diagnosed with ADHD as an adult.
A medical professional, specialized in ADHD will use multiple tests and evaluations to determine an appropriate diagnosis. Diagnosing adult clients with ADHD can be a complex process, as adult clients have often learned to mask their symptoms over the years.
ADHD symptoms can also mimic other disorders, so it is important to rule out any other diagnosis through screenings of mood disorders or thyroid/seizure disorders which often mimic symptoms. Your clinician will use a variety of behavioral scales and will collect an extensive history from you (ex: grades in school, mood dysregulations, difficulty staying tidy or making appointments).
It is not uncommon for clients with ADHD to have difficulty with memory recall, so it is helpful for collaterals to be contacted to help collect as much data as possible. Your clinician will also want to understand what symptoms you display and experience in your everyday life (ex. Difficulty paying bills on time, disinterest in your significant other, difficulty paying attention to important details) it is also helpful for collaterals to be involved in this portion.
If you question if it is a possibility for you to have a diagnosis of ADHD, getting tested may be the answer you need, to bring comfort and hope for better days ahead. We are here for you.