Red Flags for Adult ADHD

  • a lifelong history of difficulty with attention
  • a history of disruptive or impulsive behaviour
  • organizational skill problems (time management difficulties, misses appointments, frequent late and unfinished projects)
  • erratic work history (changs jobs frequently, unprepared for meetings, projects not completed on time, reports of coworkers, employers and clients being frustrated with them)
  • Anger control problems (argumentative with authority figures, over controlling as a parent, fighting with coworkers or child's teachers, episodes of rage)
  • marital problems (spouse complains that he/she does not listen, speaks without thinking, is impulsive, forgets important events)
  • being over-talkative, interrupts frequently or inappropriately, speaks too loudly
  • parenting problems ( difficulty establishing and maintaining household routines, inconsistency in dealing with the children)
  • money management problems (making impulsive purchases, running out of money, failing to pay bills or do taxes, history of bankruptcy)
  • substance use or abuse, especially alcohol or marijuana, or excessive caffeine use
  • addictions such as collecting, compulsive shopping, sexual avoidance or addiction, overeating, compulsive exercise or gambling
  • frequent accidents
  • problems with driving (speeding tickets, serious accidents, license revoked, or being overly cautious when driving to compensate for attention problems)
  • being a parent of a child with ADHD
  • a college student who is frustrated, having to reduce their course load, or having difficulty completing assignments
  • an ADHD diagnosis as a child and continuing to have problems
  • reports from those close to the adult that they are just like a child or relative with ADHD or identifying them as having many of the symptoms associated with adult ADHD
  • evidence that the adult is not just coping poorly, but is significantly impaired and is at high risk of developing secondary disorders such as anxiety and depression
  • the adult may be successful but shows impairment when compared to their potential
  • an adult who is expending more energy than others to do the same amount of work
  • an adult who is using coping strategies to compensate for their weaknesses, but still experiencing problems with their career and work relations or becoming a workaholic
  • an adult who self-diagnoses, but still needs to go through a complete assessment