October was National ADHD Awareness month, and most people immediately think of young children when this disorder is mentioned. The fact is, seniors who suffered from ADHD as a child often still exhibit symptoms as an adult - and as the aging process continues, the symptoms often worsen.
Seniors and their families often don't even know they have ADHD, which is a disorder a person is born with. The condition was only recognized about 50 years ago, and seniors who exhibit symptoms may be misdiagnosed by their physicians as having the early symptoms of dementia. It is important to know what the symptoms of ADHD are in adults, so that hopefully your aging loved one can get a proper diagnosis and treatment.
Memory issues and other symptoms of ADHD are much like those found with early dementia, unfortunately, and there are no blood tests or brain scans that can diagnose this condition. However, there are a few things you should look for if you suspect an aging loved one may have undiagnosed ADHD, so that these observations can be shared with the doctor.
What to look for
When a senior suffers from ADHD it may seem that he or she has a life that appears to be more hectic or disorganized than it should be. For instance, your loved one may have problems keeping track of details, deciding which tasks are most important, or problems with his/her organizational skills. Does your aging parent often overlook details, become distracted easily, or seem hyper-focused? It could be ADHD, if the symptoms are intrusive and persistent.
Even if someone is in their 60s, 70s, or are even older, it is important to get diagnosed. While it may seem the horse has already left the barn by this time, it can make a huge difference to a senior to know the cause of their deficiencies, and help the senior approach the situation. It's also important to note that getting the proper diagnosis plays an important role in the type and quality of care the doctor provides.
Care Indeed provides in-home care services for those in Walnut Creek, Palo Alto, and throughout the Bay Area. We know seniors suffer from all types of conditions and health issues including ADHD, dementia, diabetes, those that affect mobility, and more. Our senior caregiving experts are focused on providing quality care and helping improve quality of life for seniors who choose to live in their own homes.
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