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Is it possible to have ADHD as an adult if I never had it as a child?

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You need to have had attention and concentration problems as a child in order to be diagnosed with ADHD as an adult -- even if those early symptoms didn't come with a formal diagnosis.

People may have accused you of being lazy back in childhood, or may have thought you had another condition like depression or anxiety.

If you actually were diagnosed with the disorder as a child, you may still have it. The symptoms change as you age, and not everyone outgrows it.

From: Do You Have ADHD? WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

UpToDate: "Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in adults: Epidemiology, pathogenesis, clinical features, course, assessment, and diagnosis."

HelpGuide: "Adult ADD/ADHD - Signs, Symptoms, Effects, and Treatment."

Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: "Getting Evaluated."

University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine: "Adult Developmental Disorders."

Anxiety and Depression Association of America: "Adult ADHD."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "ADHD."

UC Davis Mind Institute. , Winter 2013/2014. ADHDnews

University of California San Diego Neuropyschiatry & Behavioral Medicine: "What is ADD?"

National Institute of Mental Health: "Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder."

Silver, Larry. .  ADDitude Magazine

Koretsky, Jennifer. . ADDitude Magazine

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association: "Autism (Autism Spectrum Disorder."

Attention Deficit Disorder Association: "Adult ADHD Self-Report Scale (ASRS-v1.1) Symptom Checklist Instructions."

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on March 25, 2019

SOURCES:

UpToDate: "Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in adults: Epidemiology, pathogenesis, clinical features, course, assessment, and diagnosis."

HelpGuide: "Adult ADD/ADHD - Signs, Symptoms, Effects, and Treatment."

Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: "Getting Evaluated."

University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine: "Adult Developmental Disorders."

Anxiety and Depression Association of America: "Adult ADHD."

National Alliance on Mental Illness: "ADHD."

UC Davis Mind Institute. , Winter 2013/2014. ADHDnews

University of California San Diego Neuropyschiatry & Behavioral Medicine: "What is ADD?"

National Institute of Mental Health: "Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder."

Silver, Larry. .  ADDitude Magazine

Koretsky, Jennifer. . ADDitude Magazine

American Speech-Language-Hearing Association: "Autism (Autism Spectrum Disorder."

Attention Deficit Disorder Association: "Adult ADHD Self-Report Scale (ASRS-v1.1) Symptom Checklist Instructions."

Reviewed by Smitha Bhandari on March 25, 2019

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How do you know if you have ADHD?

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