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Planning and ADHD don’t always mix

We all know that, as adults, some planning may be involved. Whether it’s planning on how to get to work, or planning our budget, or scheduling meetings, or making sure that work is submitted on time, there is some planning involved. It is part of being an adult, at times. Many would expect it. However, when you have ADHD/ADD, planning/time management/anything involving planning can be a pretty huge challenge. It’s really not something that comes easily for us.

It’s not that we don’t want to be able to plan. Many of us may want to. It’s something that I would like to do. The fact is that our ADHD/ADD brain is just unable to do these kind of things. It’s not really able to plan for the future.

Planning a trip to the grocery store, or school/daycare drop offs, or making sure you get to work on time can be challenge. I’ll admit, thought, that some may a bit more of a challenge than others, but can still be a bit of a challenge.

Remember: ADHD/ADD affects us all differently and what might be a challenge for me might not be for someone else with ADHD/ADD, and vice versa. However, this still doesn’t mean we don’t have difficulty with planning and anything involving planning. Just a reminder.

There are so many ways out there to help people plan and organize things and such, like agendas and to-do lists, for instance. All are good and even ADHDers/ADDers can use them. However, we have to remember that since our minds work differently, we should probably use them a bit differently.

For instance, I am a visual person. So, if I can have something that I can see as a reminder, that really helps. I may use some sticky notes at work to remind me to call someone back later, or things that I have to do during the day. Although I do have to make sure that I discard all sticky notes that I don’t need anymore.

I have used the calendar on my phone for important dates, such as appointments and such. It does help me remember. I’ll admit though that sometimes I don’t really need it. Somethings I just have an easy time to remember, but other times I do need it written down somewhere. Preferably somewhere I will be able to see it when needed and won’t lose. Such as on my iPhone. I don’t often lose or misplace my phone. So, that tool, that calendar can be useful.

I also use an actual paper calendar. I’ll admit I use that one a lot more. I’ve written everything down on it. I like having things written down on paper. I’ve written down when my kids begin school, when we get paid, ped days/days off, and pretty much everything. As I mentioned, I am a visual person. So, this definitely comes in handy.

So, I might not be good at planning everything or the best with time management, but I do have tools to help me plan somethings and remember important dates. I do still have some work to do, but it’s slowly getting there. It’s perhaps a little better now than it was, as I do now have some useful tools that really do help me. Although they might not help everyone, they do help me and there are other tools out there for every ADHDer/ADDer who needs help with planning and such.

Here are some more resources for you.
www.additudemag.com/how-to-plan-ahead-when-you-have-adhd-understanding-time/
adhdjustlikeme.wordpress.com/2016/3/30/adhd-planners-and-organizers/

Thanks for reading!!

Picture credit: Pixabay

Sticking to the conversation

When it comes to having conversations, it can be a little tricky for people with ADHD/ADD. Yes, we can have conversations. We can sometimes go on and on about a topic. Sometimes. However, it can still be a challenge, as we can also get distracted during a conversation.

I know this may seem a bit odd, but yes, this can be the case for those of us with ADHD/ADD. And there are some reasons why we may be able to focus on a conversation and not another. It mostly has to do with how our brain works.

For the most part, holding a conversation can be difficult and challenging for a few different reasons. Some can be pretty obvious, if you’re familiar with ADHD/ADD.

For one thing, we get distracted. Easily. Sometimes, even very easily. So, when a conversation begins, we may have every intention of listening, staying focused, and paying attention to what is being said and to everything involving the conversation. However, it doesn’t always work out that way. Before we know it, we may get distracted by something or someone. Maybe we will be distracted by a thought, or something going on behind the person we’re talking to, or even just a small noise in the background, whether big or small. Honestly, it really isn’t intentional. We don’t mean to get distracted and lose focus. We don’t do it on purpose. (Well, for the most part, we don’t.) Unfortunately, it’s just how our brains work. And yes, this is something that I do still have trouble with.

Interrupting is another problem we have, during conversations. I am guilty of this one too. Our brains have a difficult time waiting for our turn to talk and for the other person to finish. We can be impulsive, and this does apply to conversations. Not just impulse purchases. We don’t always know how to control those impulses. The part of our brain that is supposed to help stop our impulses doesn’t always work as well as it does for those without ADHD/ADD. Just another thing we need to deal with.

There are times when we can hold a conversation and stay focused during the entire time. Yes, without getting distracted. But like most things, we have to be really interested in the topic of conversations. You might be saying that this is the case for anyone. And yes, to some extent you would be right. However, most people without ADHD/ADD can still stay somewhat focused during a conversation that doesn’t interest them. But we just don’t. We don’t have that ability. So, if we really want to stay focused, the subject really (and I mean REALLY!) has to interest us. And this applies to pretty much everything for us.

However, as much as some conversations can hold our attentions for more than just a minute at time, it can still be a real struggle for us. It is not easy. It is a real challenge. Don’t always know what to say or how to say it. Saying something impulsively. Interrupting. Getting distracted during the middle of a conversation, which might mean that we miss some information. Perhaps even important information. So, put all of these things together, and it’s not really a good combination. This can definitely lead kids and adults with ADHD/ADD to have a difficult time socially.

Creativity and ADHD/ADD

Since I have started doing research on ADHD/ADD, I have seen various articles mention that ADHDers/ADDers tend to be creative. Many seem to go into careers where creativity is involved. So, it would seem.

This would certainly explain my interest for the arts. I’ve always had more of an interest for the arts and quite the imagination.

Many research have been done, and many have found that people with ADHD/ADD tend to be more creative than their non-ADHD/ADD counterparts. I’m not saying that people without ADHD/ADD aren’t creative. I’m sure they can be creative as well. However, generally speaking, people with ADHD/ADD tend to be more creative. I emphasize the words “generally speaking.”

Perhaps this doesn’t apply to everyone with ADHD/ADD. Some of you with ADHD/ADD may say that you guys aren’t creative, and/or it just doesn’t come naturally to you guys. And this is perfectly fine. After all, ADHD/ADD affects us all differently. So, this is something to remember and keep in mind.

Not everyone with ADHD/ADD may be creative. And not all ADHDers/ADDers who are creative may turn out to be like Da Vinci. But there are still some indications that ADHDers/ADDers are on average and generally more creative.

So as much as ADHD/ADD can present challenges and may not always been a good thing, this is something to remember. ADHD/ADD does bring in some good things, such as creativity.

Here is some articles for you.
Totallyadd.com/blog/5-superpowers-of-adhd/
www.additudemag.com/youre-not-add-part-3-youre-artistic/

I don’t know if I can do this

Let’s face, we all go through difficult times and wonder if we can do it. We all go through periods when our self-esteem is low. It happens to a lot of us. However, for those of us with ADHD/ADD, it is slightly different. Our self-esteem is affected differently from those who don’t have ADHD/ADD.

Poor self-esteem is certainly an issue for many kids with ADHD/ADD. And perhaps even for adults with ADHD/ADD. We struggle with so much. We struggle at school, at work, with chores at home. We struggle socially. We struggle with so many things, and it is no wonder that sometimes our self-esteem does suffer. Maybe saying ‘sometimes’ may be a slight understatement.

It is hard to work so hard at work or school, for instance, and not complete the work successfully, or not complete it as well as we would like. We feel like we’ve just failed. And this does affect our self-esteem. We feel like we can’t do it. Sometimes, even just say to ourselves that we aren’t smart. As untrue as it may be, it is just how we feel. We feel that we can’t do it, and we’re just dumb.

Let’s face it, having ADHD/ADD can be a struggle at times. We struggle with the simplest things, and it is hard when it doesn’t feel like we’re achieving them as well as we should or would like.

I know I’ve struggled with self-esteem. As a kid, I would often wonder why I couldn’t get good grades, despite studying so hard. I would wonder what was wrong with me. I definitely didn’t feel good about myself. Thankfully, I did find out what was wrong. Getting diagnosed helped, for sure.

I would have to say that I do still kind of struggle with self-esteem. Although the things I struggle with now are different from those from when I was a kid, I do still struggle with simple things. Like planning for things, cleaning, making sure my kids have a clean face before we leave, and things like that. Some of my struggles may seem really small and easy to deal with for some, but for me it’s different. They are struggles. I do feel bad over the smallest things. I guess I still compare myself to others. Only this time, it’s to other parents and how they seem to manage, rather than other students.

Perhaps this isn’t the best thing to do, but it can be difficult not to compare.

For someone with ADHD/ADD, we do need to feel as though we’re successful, whether it’s a school, at work, or socially. And we also hope to have someone supporting us, someone there to be our cheerleader, in a way. If there is something missing, it can be difficult for the ADHDer/ADDer to feel good about themselves. It can affect our self-esteems, if we don’t have someone supporting us, for instance.

These are some things that can certainly help. There are certainly other things that can help as well. However, these are just some of things that do help our self-esteem, or can affect it negatively, if one or more of these aspects are missing. Granted, we don’t always have a say in how our lives go, or who stays in our lives and support us, but we do still have some control.

For those of us who are adults with ADHD/ADD, there are still some things that we can do. Finding a career that suit us and interest us may be one thing. Perhaps not always the easiest thing to do, but it is still one that we can try and do. Find our best qualities and use them to find a career that we’re good at. It is also important to have some people who can support us.

For those who have kids with ADHD/ADD, there are tools you can use to help them with their self-esteem. For one thing, make sure you praise them. When you notice them doing something good, praise them. They’ve been playing well for some time? Praise them. They did something nice for someone else? Mention it. This is one thing. Find ways to allow your kids to show their strengths. Sit down with them and help them find their strengths, if they need a little help with it.

Let’s jut remember that we are intelligent people, and do have things to contribute. Yes, we do face so many challenges, but we can do it.

Here are some articles to read for further information.
www.additudemag.com/self-esteem-must-come-from-within/
www.additudemag.com/parenting-help-adhd-children-low-self-esteem/
www.additudemag.com/i-believe-in-you-how-to-vanquish-a-childs-low-self-esteem/

Picture credit Pixabay

Get the Stigma

Like many things in life, with ADHD/ADD comes some stigma. It’s not always easy to admit that you have ADHD/ADD. For me, it hasn’t always been the easiest thing to do, and I’m sure I’m not the only one who has found it difficult to admit. It took me a long time to do.

Some may ask: Well, why did it take you so long? Why were you having a difficult time telling people about your ADHD/ADD? Why do people with ADHD/ADD have a hard time saying it?

Well, there are a couple of reasons for this. There are reasons why some ADHDers/ADDers do find it difficult to talk about.

One reason is the opinions that some people have about ADHD/ADD. Some people do believe that ADHD/ADD really is just an excuse, that we’re just lazy, that ADHD/ADD is made up by someone or other, and such. It can be difficult to admit to others that you have something they don’t believe it. It’s hard to let them know that it’s not made up. The fear of being judged is real. It’s difficult to explain something that others don’t see. It is difficult.

Another reason is denial. Sometimes, it is difficult to even accept our diagnosis. We may pretend like we don’t have it. It can take time to accept. For a long time, I knew that I had ADHD/ADD and it was nice to have an explanation, but I guess part of me wanted to pretend that I didn’t have it, that I was just like everyone else. Pretending that I didn’t really have a problem.

Although I can’t speak for everyone, I can still say that I have struggled with both. Perhaps the second more than the first. Some kids in grade 7-8 did kind of made fun of the whole Ritalin thing, and it was one reason I didn’t say anything, as I didn’t want anyone to fun of me. What kid at that age wants to be teased and/or bullied? Even after kids stopped talking or joking about it, I was still worried about what some people would say. By that point, I was just used to not thinking or talking about it, and not really addressing the issue, or accepting the fact that I have ADHD. Yes, I was in denial. Looking back on it now, I do realize it now.

It’s really only in the last few years that I’ve slowly began to accept that I have it and that it’s not all bad. There are some good things about having ADHD. I’ve come to realize that there are some good things. My brain may be different, and I may learn things differently, but that’s okay. It’s what makes me who I am.

Sure, there will still be people, who don’t believe that ADHD is real, that ADHDers/ADDers are just lazy, or is caused by parenting. And yes, we ADHDers/ADDers and all the doctors, psychologists and such, who help us, know that these are misconceptions, that all of these statements are false and could not be farther from the truth. These are all false. Let’s face it, we do know exactly how hard it can be to have ADHD. We know exactly what it’s like.

ADHD is real. And it can be a struggle. We know it.

At the end of the day, all we can really do is keep trying to learn about it and share information with others. Hopefully, there will be more studies done on ADHD as well, and more information available to us on the subject. We should keep talking about it and help others learn about it. There are definitely people out there willing to learn about it and to listen to what we have to say about ADHD/ADD. We may have a long journey ahead and a lot of work to do, but I think that this is the best that we can do. We do need to stick together, learn about it, share information, and just keep it out there. We shouldn’t be ashamed of having it. There is nothing wrong with having ADHD/ADD. As much as it can be a struggle, there are many good things about ADHD/ADD as well and there are ways that we can manage our symptoms. Sometimes, we just need time to find out.

So, let’s just keep the discussion open. Hopefully, one day, the stigma won’t be there anymore. Let’s keep working on it together.

For those who work like a little more information on stigma, here are some other articles as well.
www.additudemag.com/overcoming-adhd-stigma/
www.additudemag.com/success-story-adhd-dyslexia-stigma/
www.additudemag.com/adhd-in-girls-shame/

Always on the go

Another part of ADHD is the hyperactivity component. Here’s one that I have discussed yet, and perhaps now is a good time to do so.

The hyperactive type is perhaps the most obvious aspect of ADHD/ADD. The one that most can see. We can all notice the kid that won’t stop fidgeting, can’t sit still for more than a few seconds, and always needs to be doing something, right? It seem perhaps easy to spot, for the most part.

The hyperactivity type of ADHD/ADD presents itself quite differently from the primarily inattentive type, and not everyone with ADHD/ADD has this hyperactivity type. For instance, I don’t have it. Yes, I do have ADHD/ADD, but I fall into the inattentive type. I am not hyperactive. I don’t fall into the hyperactive type of ADHD. Some do, but not every ADHDer/ADDer does.

Although I may not personally have this type, and may have to do some research, here are some things that I have been able to say. An ADHDer/ADDer with the hyperactive type will “always be on the go”, will have an extremely difficult time staying in their seat, has a hard time playing quiet games, just to name a few things. There are a lot more to this type of ADHD/ADD, but this is a good place to start, I think. While the inattentive ADHDer/ADDer has difficulty focusing and tends to daydream instead, the hyperactive ADHDer has difficulty sitting still and often feels restless.

Although both types fall under the same neurodevelopmental condition and do have some similarities, there is a difference between these two types. ADHDers/ADDers have difficulty focusing on tasks, completing them, and such. However, how their ADHD/ADD presents itself may be quite different. One thing to remember is that, although there is a clear description of the different types of ADHD/ADD, it still presents itself differently in each person. For instance, my inattentive ADHD/ADD may be different from someone else with the same type, and the same applies with those who have the hyperactive type.

I may not have this type, but I can imagine that it isn’t always easy to have to handle. ADHD/ADD isn’t always the best. It may not always be easy or pleasant, but we still have to deal with it. It is a part of us.

However, much like so many other things, there are ways to manage hyperactivity. Yes, there are ways to manage it.
There are quite a few suggestions out there. Make time for physical activities, such as time at the park for the hyperactive kid, or going to the gym or going for a run for the hyperactive adult. Going to water parks. Following some fitness DVD’s.

These are just some suggestions that I have found. It does make sense to try and calm hyperactivity by using some physical activities. So, hopefully those of you who have this type of ADHD/ADD find some useful ways to calm your fidgeting feet and such.

Here are some articles that might be useful.

What Are the Symptoms of ADHD?

Hyperactivity Help for Indoor-Weather Days

Picture credit: Pixabay

Wait, what was I doing?

For those who don’t have ADHD, it may be easy to focus on tasks, whether at work, or school, or a chore at home, or any other activity that may require a lot of attention for long periods of time. It may not be an issue. Not much of a problem. However, for those of us who do have ADHD, it is quite the opposite. We have a difficult time focusing. We are very easily distracted. And this happens every day. All the time. Or most of the time, to say the least.

Let’s face it, distractibility is one of the main symptoms of ADHD. Most of us know this. We get easily distracted in class, or at work, or when we are trying to do a chore at home.

The reason for this is that the neurotransmitters in our brains lack stimulation. The neurotransmitters are in charge of helping us focus, organize, and things like that. This is why ADHDers/ADDers get so easily distracted, and have difficulty organizing. It’s because part of our brains aren’t functioning as they should. This explains why ADHDers/ADDers have difficulty focusing and completing tasks on time. Some even go uncompleted all together. So, for those of you who do have ADHD/ADD, keep this in mind.

Knowing this information can be good to know, in my opinion. Sure, I am not a neuroscientist, or anything like that, and trying to understand it all can be tricky for sure. So, trying to understand more than this might take some time for me, but at least this is a good place to start understanding our unique brains. Gotta start somewhere. It is still nice to know a little about how our brains work and how they work differently from someone who doesn’t have ADHD/ADD.

Now, I’m not saying that this knowledge is going to make focusing easier. Let’s face it, I’m still going to get distracted. And it’s most likely going to happen easily. I’m sure I’m not the only ADHDer/ADDer who’ll be saying this. It’s just how our brains work, and that’s fine. We should accept it. Our brains are the way they are, and are going to keep getting distracted.

However, there are still ways we can manage our distractibility. We might not be able to take away our distractibility all together, but there are still ways we can make sure we don’t get distracted as often.

Sometimes, using a timer can help. You set your timer for, say, 25 minutes, and then take a 5-minute break. This may help you get more done, as you set some time to work and some time to recharge. You’re still getting the task done, but you’re breaking it into smaller segments. So, next time you’re cleaning, or writing, or something, maybe using a timer could help.

If you’re at a meeting, maybe sitting closer to the front. Being closer to your supervisor may help you stay focus. It can maybe help you remind your brain that it is not time to get distracted and that your supervisor is probably trying to tell you something important and helpful.

Sometimes, even thinking positively may be helpful as well. If you’re facing a challenging task, saying to yourself that you can do it can help. Thinking negatively can just make things more challenging and difficult to accomplish, while saying or thinking that you can do it may have the opposite effect.

So, these are some suggestions that we can all try and stay a little more focused, especially when we are faced with a task that we don’t like. There are ways for us to manage our focus and distractibility. I know I do plan on trying some of these suggestions and methods.

Here’s some more information for those of you who are interested.

9 Productivity Tricks for the Easily Distracted

Manage Your Distractions

Picture credit: Pixabay

Moms with ADHD/ADD

Being a parent isn’t easy. It’s really hard work. I’m sure that those of you reading this, who are parents, may agree. At least, the parents I know probably would. Don’t get me wrong is extremely rewarding, but that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t come with its own challenges and difficulties.

Now, although I can’t talk about what it’s like to be a dad or the challenges dads face or anything, I can talk about being a mom. I can talk about being a mom and my experiences as such. I do have a little more experience with it and have a little more knowledge. So, I’ll stick with that. Before I begin, I just want to say that I’m not trying to say one parent’s role is harder than the other, or that one parent is lazy, or anything like that. I’m simply making some observations, not judgements or anything to that effect. So, I just want to make that clear.

Moms nowadays still have their own set of responsibilities. Even in families where both spouses share tasks around the house and with the kids equally, there are still things that seem to be more a part of the mom’s role.

For most moms, cleaning the house, or remembering to put a signed form in your child’s school back, might be easy to do and remember. No problem. It is done before you can count to three. However, for a mom with ADHD/ADD, like myself, it’s really not that easy. It isn’t as simple as counting to three. For someone who struggles with disorganization, difficulty focusing, remembering important things, and such, remembering your child’s form for a field trip, for instance, is and can be a challenge.

I have struggled with the simplest things. I have forgotten to wash my kids’ faces before leaving the house more often than I care to admit to. There have been times I have forgotten about the laundry until an hour or two later. Getting my kids ready weekday mornings is a huge struggle. Weekday mornings means getting three kids ready, one lunch ready and packed, breakfast for three kids, four people dressed, one kid off on a bus, and the other two dropped off at daycare. And that’s just a summary. I have probably forgotten something, which wouldn’t be the first time. Although I do have a routine, they can still be overwhelming. Making sure I get everything done isn’t easy.
This is just a small picture of how it is for me. A mom with ADHD/ADD. And I can say that it is scary and overwhelming. Some moms have their act down, but if you’re mom with ADHD/ADD, like me, you might not. I know I don’t. My eldest is 6 ½, and I’m still not sure what I’m doing. I might have things a little more under control, but it’s a struggle and a challenge every day. I might not forget show and tell, but I do still have a difficult time with other things, like making sure I make appointments.

It really isn’t easy to juggle so many things at once. At least, it isn’t for me. It can be challenging to get my kids ready, make them breakfast, and make a lunch for my eldest, while also trying to have conversations with my kids. Then, I also have to make sure that I’m not forgetting anything. Some mornings are easier than others, but it can still be tricky all the same.

There are ways to manage things and organize, as a mom with ADHD/ADD. I’m certainly not saying it’s impossible to do, or that we shouldn’t do. Much like everything else with ADHD/ADD, we just need to do some research and find ways to handle everything. For instance, if cleaning is a task that is disliked beyond belief, then there are some options. If you are able to afford a cleaning lady, then this might be an option. If you’re lucky enough to have a partner who is good with tidying and such, like myself, then maybe that person can help a bit. I know it does give me a bit of motivation to do some, when I do see others do some. Not always, but sometimes. If neither of these are possible, then it might be time to look into other possibilities.

Thankfully, there are some resources out there for moms with ADHD/ADD, like myself. Sometimes, we just need to admit to ourselves that we need help, just like everyone else. Whether you’re a mom with ADHD/ADD or not, it’s okay to admit that we can’t do it by ourselves and we need help. We all need help from time to time. It can be sometimes when you have ADHD/ADD and don’t want to admit that you need help. It can be sometimes easier to pretend we can do it, just like everyone else. But at the end of the day, if you need help, I’m sure there is someone out there, who can help. You just need to ask. There is no shame in asking for help.

If you would like to read a little more on the subject, here are a few more articles.
www.additudemag.com/when-moms-have-adhd-too/
www.verywellmind.com/moms-with-add-20405/

Picture credit: Pixabay

It’s not an excuse

When explaining our ADHD/ADD to others, it may seem as though we’re just making excuses. Again. I can understand how it may sound like to someone who doesn’t have ADHD/ADD. There have been times, when I have explained my ADHD/ADD to others. And I’ll admit that I do understand how it could sound like I’m just making excuses. If I didn’t have ADHD/ADD and had to listen to it, I probably might think that some of it was just excuses. I would probably be thinking the same thing as others. Nothing more, nothing less. I can totally see it.

However, it really isn’t. I know ADHD/ADD isn’t an excuse, and I’m not making excuses for myself. Quite the opposite. And I’m sure that other ADHDers/ADDers, who try to explain it, aren’t making them either.
ADHD/ADD is not an excuse. Far from. We’re not trying to make excuses. And most of us do understand that having ADHD/ADD is not a reason to making excuses why we shouldn’t do work or anything like that. We’re simply trying to explain our condition, a neurobiological disorder. It is a part of us, and it can help if others understand.

If someone were to explain that they have the flu and how it affects, we would most likely listen and be somewhat understanding. Many may not think that this person is simply making excuses, but may be trying to explain why they aren’t at their best and their performance at work isn’t as good as it usually is, for instance.
Alright, perhaps this isn’t the best example, but hopefully you understand the point that I am trying to make.
If we are not at our best, due to some illness, we may try to explain why this may be the case. It is similar with ADHD/ADD. We do sometimes try to explain why we may be late, or why our office is so messy, or whatever else that we are trying to explain related to our ADHD/ADD. We do this not to make an excuse, but to explain. We are simply try to explain our ADHD/ADD, how our minds work, and such. That is all we are trying to do.

As much as there are some benefits to having ADHD/ADD, I’m not always sure I would want to have it. Or at least, I would hold on to my creativity and such, but wouldn’t wish to be so disorganized, or messy, or unfocused. It isn’t something that is always easy to deal with, and there are certainly days when I wish I didn’t have it.

There are certainly days, when I wish I didn’t have it. And yet, here I am. I do have it, and like many other ADHDers/ADDers, I do have to accept it. And there are several ways we can do that. One is by explaining it to others, who may not have it. Raising awareness about ADHD/ADD could potentially be beneficial and perhaps eventually there may be more acceptance of this condition.

So, at the end of the day, ADHD/ADD is not an excuse or a choice. It is an explanation for a condition that we can’t always help. It is an explanation for how our minds and brains work differently. For those who don’t have ADHD/ADD, perhaps keep this in mind. I’m sure many with ADHD/ADD would appreciate it.
Here are some other accounts and articles about ADHD/ADD not being an excuse.

Why You Should Take Control of Your ADHD

ADHD Is Not an Excuse — Ever

It’s Not an Excuse. It’s a Neurological Condition.

Picture credit: Pixabay

People with ADHD and their sleep

It does seem that one problem that many kids and adults with ADHD/ADD have is trouble with sleep. It is something that many with ADHD/ADD struggle with. This difficulty with sleep does affect both kids and adults with ADHD/ADD alike. We’re noticing it in many, although not every ADHDer/ADDer does have problems with their sleep.
Researchers are beginning to see a connection between ADHD and sleep. Studies have shown that some ADHDers/ADDers have difficulty with sleep in three ways: falling asleep, staying asleep, and waking up. These create some sleep disturbances that kids and adults with ADHD/ADD may experience.
Let’s take the “falling asleep” disturbance. For non-ADHDers/ADDers, it might be easy to calm down any thoughts, when laying down in bed to go to sleep. However, for ADHDers/ADDers, it’s not always that easy. Our minds tend to be like hamster wheels wit so many thoughts going on. As much as we may try to slow our thoughts down, it is a challenge for us to do it. So, sometimes, it keeps us up, and we do lose some sleep.
It would also seem that our active minds are a reason why we also have difficulty staying asleep as well. Or at least, why some ADHDers/ADDers have difficulty staying asleep. Our minds don’t seem to want to stop. Even for sleep. As our minds race through thought after thought, it may wake us up and keep us from having a good night sleep.
So, with these two disturbances in mind, I guess we can somewhat guess why waking up might be difficult for some. If we’re not sleeping well, then it makes sense that we may have difficulty waking up in the morning. We can make the connection. It may not make it any easier to go through the day, if we are tired, but at least we can know the reason if we are experiencing this.
Researchers still don’t fully know what causes these sleep disturbances. However, it does seem to be catching their attention and some are doing some research, in order to understand the issue and connection.
As much as sleep disturbances do affect ADHDers/ADDers, it does seem as though it may affect all of us.
In my case, I think I’ve only had trouble with sleep in the last few years. I will wake up a few times during the night. I’m not sure if it is related to my ADHD/ADD, or if it’s just related to being a mom (as my kids will sometimes wake up and come sleep with my husband and I) and my ever changing sleep patterns over the last 6-7 years. I have no trouble falling asleep, or even waking up in the morning. I will just have a difficult time staying asleep.
It can be difficult to find out what causes the sleep disturbances. But there are still ways that can help us with sleep, such as having a routine. This is just one example of what may help, for those ADHD/ADD suffering from sleep disturbances. There are things that can help. And we do need to try and get as much sleep as we can, so that we can function the next day. Sleep can also help our symptoms. Just some things to remember.
Hopefully, researchers will be able to learn more about the sleep disturbances in ADHDers/ADDers.
In the meantime, here some articles that may be useful for you. Although I am sure that you could find more, but here’s a start.
Sleepfoundation.org/sleep-disorders-problems/adhd-and-sleep
www.additudemag.com/adhd-sleep-disturbances-symptoms/
www.additudemag.com/sleep-problems-may-point-to-adhd/