8 Major Symptoms of ADHD in Adults


Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) was once thought to affect only children, but, as we now know, the primary characteristics of inattention, impulsiveness, and hyperactivity also afflicts adults. Although some of the symptoms seen in children, such as hyperactivity, become more subtle with age, certain areas like self-control, self-motivation, and attention pose bigger challenges for adults with ADHD. Many adults who struggle with this condition learn to compensate for their weaknesses, but still experience problems with their career and relationships. ADHD affects many adults, and it’s something that no one truly outgrows, but help is available for those who want to know more about ADHD and start addressing their problems. Here are eight major symptoms of ADHD in adults:

  1. Impulsive:

    Impulsiveness is a red flag for diagnosing ADHD in adults. Those who struggle with this disorder often have poor self-control or self-discipline. They act before thinking and make rash decisions without considering the consequences. Impulsivity can cause people to behave recklessly and inappropriately, which can open the door for addictive tendencies, substance experimentation or abuse, and trouble with the law.

  2. Disorganized:

    Adults with ADHD are typically disorganized. Their home, office, car, and desk are almost always messy and cluttered, resulting in lost or misplaced items. Making plans and actually sticking to them is hard for someone with ADHD because they lack the time management and organizational skills to see plans all the way through.

  3. Chronic lateness:

    A common symptom of adult ADHD is chronic lateness. It’s a struggle every day to get out the door and get to your destination on time. This problem seeps into virtually all areas of your life. Being chronically tardy can cause you to miss important events, lose your job, pay unnecessary late fees, and more.

  4. Restless:

    Adults with ADHD often display the same hyperactive symptoms you see in children. Like the Energizer Bunny, ADHD adults typically have trouble sitting still and are constantly on the go. They may fidget, pace, and talk excessively and always seem to be doing a million things at once.

  5. Inattentive:

    Adults with ADHD often have difficulty paying attention and staying focused for long periods of time. Whether it’s a conversation with a friend, a work meeting, or a movie, people with ADHD tend to get distracted easily and zone out without even realizing it. They also lack the focus and control needed to stay on task, making it extremely hard to complete projects from start to finish.

  6. Workaholic:

    Adults with ADHD tend to overcompensate for their weaknesses and expend more energy than others to do the same amount of work. This, in turn, can lead a person with ADHD to become a workaholic. Although they may be spending more time at work than their colleagues, they may still have problems reaching their full potential.

  7. Forgetful:

    Forgetfulness is a common trait in people with ADHD. It can range from constantly misplacing your wallet, keys, or cell phone, to bigger things like forgetting to pay the bills and missing important appointments and deadlines. A lack of organizational skills and time management make it harder for people with ADHD to stay on top of things and remember important information.

  8. Overly talkative:

    Adults with ADHD are typically more talkative than the average person. They frequently interrupt and talk over people. This excessive chattiness is often accompanied by loud talking, racing thoughts, zoning out, and constant fidgeting. Many ADHD adults have poor listening skills and will blurt out inappropriate things without thinking.