Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), formerly referred to as attention-deficit disorder (ADD), is a problem characterized by an inability to focus one’s attention; an inability to control impulses, behaviors, and emotions; and a recurring feeling of restlessness. For someone struggling with ADHD, these problems are frequent and prevent the person from completing tasks in a quick and efficient way.
Adults with ADHD typically have a low tolerance for frustration. They are easily distracted at home and at their jobs. They often find it very difficult to read or focus their attention on one thing, so they frequently switch tasks. As a result, others might describe them as restless, as daydreamers, or as people who aren’t detail oriented.
Many people with this problem also often find it hard to control their impulses. For example, they might frequently interrupt others’ conversations or have a history of automobile crashes or other accidents caused by impulsive behavior. They might also find it hard to remain seated for a long time or to work quietly.
People struggling with ADHD are often restless and forgetful. However, this doesn’t happen because they aren’t trying hard enough or because they’re lazy. It happens because they often find it exceptionally difficult to concentrate on a single thought or topic for more than a few minutes. For adults with ADHD, no amount of willpower is enough to counteract the forces of the disorder. Due to this inability to focus, many people with ADHD perform poorly at school and work despite their qualifications and true abilities.
Most adults with ADHD can remember having this problem since they were children. Frequently, they can remember being disciplined for not being able to sit still or finish their schoolwork. And while some people might outgrow these problems or have them become less severe over time, many adults remain burdened with these problems for most of their lives. Some research indicates that as adults with ADHD age, their hyperactive behaviors become less frequent; however, their disorganized behaviors often become more noticeable.