Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a complex neurodevelopmental disorder that can make it difficult for you to operate in a variety of settings, including the workplace, school, and even your household. Although ADHD can manifest as difficulties in daily life, both children and adults can exhibit a variety of symptoms that can be challenging to identify. The average age at which mild ADHD is diagnosed in children is seven years old. ADHD is typically diagnosed in children by the time they are teenagers. Adults with ADHD can have displayed complex early symptoms that were disregarded, resulting in a late diagnosis later in life. We'll go through some of the typical symptoms of ADHD in kids and adults below, along with advice on how to manage the condition and resources for support.
Signs of ADHD in Children
Inattention, hyperactivity-impulsivity, or a mix of the two are the main symptoms of ADHD. Someone with ADHD may struggle to focus and stay organized, exhibit excessive pacing or restlessness, and struggle with self-control or impulsive behaviors. This may result in symptoms that manifest at home, in daycare, or at school in young children or toddlers with ADHD, including:
Trouble focusing on activities and becoming easily distracted
Low attention span while playing or doing schoolwork
Fidgeting, squirming, or otherwise having trouble sitting still
Constantly needing movement or frequently running around
Engaging in activities loudly or disruptively
Excess talking and interrupting other people
Symptoms of ADHD in Teenagers
Children with ADHD may have different symptoms as they age. Throughout certain situations, childhood symptoms may become less bothersome in adolescence, while new symptoms may appear as a result of the shifting responsibilities that come with getting older.
Other symptoms that can manifest in adolescents and teenagers with ADHD include:
difficulty focusing on schoolwork or other work
frequently making mistakes while doing work
trouble finishing tasks, especially schoolwork or chores
trouble with task organization and time management
frequently forgetting things or losing personal items
frequently avoiding mentally taxing tasks
experiencing increased frustration and emotional sensitivity
trouble navigating social and familial relationships
increased conflict with parents due to ADHD symptoms affecting the home life
It’s important to understand that while these symptoms of inattentiveness, hyperactivity, and impulsivity can sometimes cause adolescents and teenagers with this condition to appear “immature,” they are simply a part of ADHD and have nothing to do with a child’s maturity level.