9 Signs of Adult ADHD

Doctor William C Lloyd Healthgrades Medical Reviewer
Medically Reviewed By William C. Lloyd III, MD, FACS
Written By Linda Wasmer Andrews on August 17, 2021

ADHD is commonly considered a childhood disorder. But a number of kids with ADHD still have it when they grow up. Making matters worse, it can be harder to diagnose ADHD in adults, and many adults don’t even know they have it. These nine symptoms can be a sign of ADHD in adults.

  • Struggles with Normal Conversation
    Struggles with Normal Conversation
    Do you know an adult who talks too much? And maybe when you try to talk, he or she either doesn’t listen or constantly finishes your sentences? These traits are definitely annoying—and can be symptoms of ADHD.
  • Poor Driving Record
    Poor Driving Record
    Adults with ADHD likely have had more traffic accidents and tickets than those without ADHD. In fact, teens with ADHD have nearly four times as many traffic accidents as their peers. They also get three times as many speeding tickets.
  • gettyimages 467116976
    Problems at Work
    Being unproductive on the job, not getting along with coworkers, and even regularly losing jobs could all be signs of ADHD.
  • meeting with doctors and business people
    People with ADHD might have trouble remaining seated during meetings, fidgeting or squirming. Even when the expectation is to remain seated, such as during a business meeting, an adult with ADHD might get up from his or her seat more often than others.
  • Dentist Appointment
    Trouble Remembering Appointments
    Someone who often misses appointments or doesn’t follow through with his or her obligations could have ADHD.
  • messy desk
    Lose or Misplace Things Often
    Most people misplace their keys at some point. But if someone seems to make a habit of misplacing or losing items at home and at work, it could be a symptom of ADHD.
  • Portrait of young man sitting at desk with mobile phone and laptop
    Difficulty Concentrating
    Adults with ADHD might be more easily distracted by another activity or noise. They could also be more prone to careless mistakes. Rather than focusing on one thing at a time, adults with ADHD might try to do many things at once—most of which are unsuccessful.
  • African American woman on computer at home
    Trouble Relaxing
    People with ADHD might feel as if they are driven by a motor to do things. When they have time to themselves, it could be a struggle to unwind and relax.
  • Bad Moods
    Bad Moods
    ADHD can cause a person to often lose his or her temper or struggle to stay in a good mood. These bad moods, as well as other ADHD symptoms, can hurt relationships with friends, family, and colleagues. An adult with ADHD might even have a long history of failed relationships.
  • Talk with Your Doctor
    Talk with Your Doctor
    In order for ADHD to be diagnosed in an adult, symptoms have to date back to childhood. Sometimes ADHD-like symptoms are caused by something other than ADHD, such as depression, mania, thyroid problems, or drug abuse. So if you think you might have ADHD, be sure to see a licensed mental health professional.
9 Signs of Adult ADHD

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Last Review Date: 2021 Aug 17
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