ADHD: Signs and Symptoms

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is marked by inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity. It affects not only children, but also many adults. For individuals with ADHD, the symptoms interfere with daily life. With treatment, however, people with ADHD can further their success in school, work, and other aspects of life.


The symptoms of ADHD may vary depending on the person. Common symptoms include, but are not limited to:

  • Inattention
    • Difficulty keeping focus
    • Disorganized
    • Easily distracted
    • Trouble completing assignments or projects
    • Difficulty processing information quickly 
  • Hyperactivity
    • Trouble sitting still
    • Often fidgeting or talking
    • Restlessness
  • Impulsivity
    • Interrupting others
    • Impatience
    • Acting without thinking of consequences
    • Inability to delay gratification 

Treatment and Therapies

Treatment and therapies may vary but treatment plans commonly include:

  • Medication
    • Although not always, stimulants are most commonly used to treat ADHD as they increase dopamine and norepinephrine, which play essential roles in thinking and attention
    • Non-stimulants may also be used in the treatment of ADHD although tend to work slower, but they still have been found to improve focus, attention, and impulsivity
  • Psychotherapy
    • Behavioral therapy is often used as it helps one monitor their behaviors, and focus on the positives of controlling their impulses
    • Cognitive behavioral therapy is also used as it helps teach mindfulness activities and creates a greater sense of self-awareness


  • To learn more about attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or to find out if it may affect you, we recommend contacting your health care provider.
  • To read more about ADHD, the following resources are suggested:
    • NAMI:
    • NIMH: