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This topic is adapted from the Life Noggin YouTube channel.

[Related: Study Less, Study Smart]

ADHD is a condition that we often hear about but is something that most of us don’t know enough about to fully understand. Mayim Bialik helps to explain ADHD, its symptoms, treatments, and how people who suffer from ADHD manage their condition.

Video Highlights:

  • ADHD is the shorter, more common name for Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a medical condition associated with unusually high levels of inattention, impulsivity, and hyperactivity. It is often discovered in childhood, but the symptoms can continue into adulthood.
  • Those who suffer from ADHD frequently display a difficulty or inability to focus or pay attention, hyperactivity in the form of fidgeting or excessive talking, and impulsivity displayed in quick, unthought-out decisions even in important situations.
  • While many of us can relate to some of these symptoms from time-to-time, that does not necessarily mean that we suffer from ADHD. Those who have ADHD find that these symptoms interfere with their daily lives, impacting their ability to perform well in school or work and reducing the quality of their social lives.
  • The reported amount of diagnosed cases of ADHD indicates that while we may sometimes notice these symptoms in our lives, it is unlikely that you actually have ADHD. Only around 11% of school-aged children were diagnosed with ADHD by a medical professional. If you are female, your chances of having ADHD are even slimmer, with data showing the amount of high school-aged boys diagnosed with ADHD was almost double the number of their female peers. However, while these numbers may be relatively low, these only demonstrate the amount of diagnosed ADHD cases. The actual number of occurrences may be higher, and in particular, those who may have milder cases might go undiagnosed.
  • While there is no cure for ADHD, the condition and symptoms are often treated with stimulant medications meant to aid in thinking and staying focused, and psychotherapy aimed at helping the patient learn how to cope with emotional situations, stay more focused, and organize tasks. Exercise has also recently been shown to have a positive impact on helping ADHD patients manage their symptoms. These treatments are all aimed at helping the ADHD sufferer better handle their condition and navigate daily life.

Understanding the nature of ADHD can help those who suffer from it manage their symptoms and lives and can give insight to those who have friends, family, or co-workers with ADHD.

[Related: Social Development and Friendship: Life with Asperger Syndrome]

[Related: What Is Clinical Depression?]

Written content for this topic by Andi Dolinsky-Webb.

Discussion Questions:

  1. Watch the video together or invite someone to summarize the topic.
  2. What is your initial reaction to this video? Do you disagree with any of it? What jumped out at you?
  3. What sort of symptoms of ADHD stand out to you/have you seen in others? Have you ever been diagnosed with ADHD or know someone who has?
  4. How do you feel about medications for psychological conditions? Does the age of the person with the condition make a difference in your thoughts?
  5. Do you think ADHD is overdiagnosed, underdiagnosed, or pretty accurately diagnosed? Why?
  6. How can those who do not suffer from ADHD relate better to those who do?
  7. Write a personal action step based on this conversation.