Most children diagnosed with ADHD will continue to have the symptoms in their teens as well. ADHD teenagers have similar symptoms to that they had when they were younger. The symptoms include disorganization, distractibility, hyperactivity, poor concentration, and impulsivity. It is to be noted that during teen years, ADHD symptoms may take a turn for the worse. The reasons are hormonal changes that adolescents go through and also the demands of the school as well as extracurricular activities which are on the rise.
ADHD’s Affect on a Teenager’s Life
It is unfortunate to note that poor concentration and distractibility lead to several problems in school. Grades are subject to fall, especially if the adolescent is not getting proper treatment for ADHD. It is fairly common in youngsters suffering from ADHD to lose textbooks, forget assignments, become bored with routine classwork, etc. Teens tend to get either inattentive or excessively attentive which makes them blurt out answers even before they were asked. They may interrupt other students or teachers in class and rush through assignments. They could become fidgety and find it difficult to manage sitting still in the class.
ADHD teens focus so much on other things that they forget to focus on the job at hand. This is generally seen as doing homework, maintaining relationships with peer and developing athletic skills.
Driving is also a matter of concern for teenagers with ADHD since they are two to four times at risk of getting into an accident as compared to teenagers without ADHD. This is also because of the facts that ADHD patients are risk-taking, impulsive, thrill-seeking and immature in judgment. Serious injuries and accidents are most likely to happen to people having these traits. However, those who take ADHD medications are at lower risk of causing accidents.
ADHD teens also have a propensity for alcohol and drug abuse than those who do not have this condition.
ADHD in teens can be treated using a combination of both behavior therapy and medication. Behavior therapy helps to improve behavior issue that is a major part of ADHD. Stimulants commonly suggested by doctors to treat ADHD include methylphenidate (Quillivant XR, Concerta, Ritalin), lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse), dextroamphetamine (Adderall, Adderall XR), dexmethylphenidate (Focalin, Focalin XR). Some non-stimulant medications include Kapvay, Intuniv, and Strattera.