Does your significant other seem to make little effort to fulfill requests and complete tasks around the house, on the job, or in general? If so, you might chalk it up to habitual laziness, but there could be another explanation – attention deficit disorder (ADD) or attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
An estimated 4.4 percent of American adults are affected with ADD/ADHD. Their brains work differently than those without the condition, as well as those who are just plain lazy. Unfortunately, however hard they may try to accomplish certain tasks, ADHD people find it difficult to do so, which can lead to psychological and emotional issues, such as frustration and low self-esteem, not to mention relationship problems.
The good news is that there is a therapy that can help people with ADHD.
How to Tell If Your Spouse May Have ADHD
While it is difficult to diagnose without the help of a professional, people with ADHD often present the following symptoms:
A Short Attention Span.
Those with ADD/ADHD have difficulty focusing their attention on dull, routine, everyday tasks (such as household chores, completing paperwork on the job, or making repairs at home). They may forget about the task, start it but fail to finish it or do a hasty and careless job. This isn’t necessarily something lazy individuals struggle with.
Those with ADD/ADHD tend to notice more in their environment than others. As such, the simplest distraction (like a phone notification, flashing light, a smell, or a moving object) can draw them off task. Lazy individuals choose not to do what they need to do for other reasons than simply being distracted by other stimuli.
Those with ADD/ADHD may be habitually late and have trouble meeting deadlines. Also, they find it difficult to keep things – such as their work desk, drawers, and living space – tidy and well-organized. Lazy people may exhibit this sign, which is why it is important to look out for other signs of ADD/ADHD or consult a professional to confirm a diagnosis.
Tends to Procrastinate.
Those with ADD/ADHD are notorious for putting things off until the last minute. They may not even start a project until a deadline is upon them or until someone else is angry with them for not completing it on time. Lazy individuals tend to procrastinate, as well, which is why this sign alone may not be enough to confirm a diagnosis of ADD/ADHD.
Displays Poor Judgment.
Those with ADD/ADHD tend to be impulsive, saying and doing things without considering the consequences of their actions, and have difficulty learning from their mistakes. Lazy individuals will likely show poor judgment through procrastinating or being unorganized in certain aspects of their life, but a consistent display of poor judgment isn’t necessarily a common trait among those who are simply lazy.
Those with ADD/ADHD are not known for their drive or enthusiasm. They lack the impetus to start, stick with, and finish tasks and projects in a timely manner, which is why their dawdling is often misinterpreted as laziness.
The Cause of ADD/ADHD
There is a perfectly rational reason why those with ADD/ADHD behave the way they do. It is a brain-based disorder involving blood flow. In a healthy brain, one’s concentration causes blood flow to increase in certain regions, notably the prefrontal cortex, which controls focus, planning, organization, impulse control, judgment, and follow-through. However, when those with ADD/ADHD try to concentrate, their blood flow tends to decrease in the prefrontal cortex, thus impairing their ability to stay focused.
In addition, ADD/ADHD is associated with issues involving neurotransmitters, the chemical messengers in the brain. Those with ADD/ADHD have a relative deficiency of the neurotransmitter dopamine, a chemical involved with focus, attention span, motivation, and follow-through. Low availability of dopamine in the brain can trigger the common signs and symptoms of ADD/ADHD.
ADHD Therapists in Atlanta and Alpharetta, Georgia
The encouraging news is that ADD/ADHD is a treatable disorder. At Atlanta Specialized Care, our dedicated therapists are specially trained to help patients with ADD/ADHD address and manage their condition. Effective, targeted, and personalized treatment plans focus on removing the barriers that hinder people with ADD/ADHD from being functional and help them lead a more productive life.
For more information about our areas of expertise – specifically, as they relate to treating ADD/ADHD – or to request an appointment at our office, please call Atlanta Specialized Care at (770) 815-6853 or arrange a consultation online by using our interactive appointment request form.