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What it’s Like to Live with ADHD

What it’s Like to Live with ADHD

ADHD is a condition common among children that have a problem with paying attention, impulsivity, and hyperactivity. According to AADD-UK, kids between the ages of 5-15 with 3.62% of boys and .85% of girls have ADHD. People who are undiagnosed tend to be labeled as lazy, disruptive, or being bad. It is important to understand what is going on in the mind of someone with ADHD in order to better understand it.

According to WebMD, having ADHD means always being on the edge and never knowing when something can go horribly wrong. It is like if your boss calls and you wonder what went wrong and assuming the worst. It can feel like being constantly overwhelmed and feeling attacked by different lights and sounds. You jump from subject to subject with a lot of thoughts in your head at once. You can be fidgety, have trouble sitting still, and not being comfortable when sitting in a chair.

ADHD is liking having a bunch of tabs on your computer pop up at once and doing something differently to each one simultaneously. When a lot of people talk at once, it can be like someone popping bubble wrap in your ears. Your mind can be swimming with thoughts such as remembering what to do next, what comes first, what time appointments are, what to bring, what time to leave, having to make dinner, having to pay the bills, etc. It can feel like you are supercharged all of the time with a bunch of ideas coming at you at once.

Being around the silence can give you the urge to hum, look all over the place, stretch, doodle and other modes of fidgeting compared to being in a crowded area where it can be more comfortable. You feel like the world is about to cave in with a lot of trouble prioritizing. Once you are diagnosed, you will feel much better knowing there is a reason for being impulsive and not being able to pay attention instead of people thinking you are lazy or a bad student. When taking medication like Ritalin, your thoughts are no longer foggy, the windshield wiper that used to be foggy is now clear, and the static radio starts to sound clear. It is important to seek a diagnosis and to be treated so the world seems less overwhelming.


Castle Craig is one of the most established and respected addiction rehab centers in the UK. Castle Craig provides consulting psychiatrists who diagnose associated mental illnesses like anxiety states, depression, ADD, PTSD, eating disorders, compulsive gambling, and compulsive relationships. For information, call our 24 hour free confidential phone-line: 0808 256 3732. From outside the UK please call: +44 1721 788 006 (normal charges apply).

Page published: November 14, 2017. Page last reviewed and clinically fact-checked November 14, 2017