Dr. Kim Mulvihill ReportingAt a special meeting last week New York, experts discussed how ADHD develops in childhood, usually before the age of seven. But it's often not recognized in individuals until later in life when they are in demanding or stressful situations.
Julie Knapp, Adult ADHD Patient: “I do well in school, but I work very very hard. I'm sometimes forgetful a little bit. I can't sit still sometimes.”
Twenty-eight year old Julie Knapp has a hard time focusing on her pre-med studies. She was just diagnosed with ADHD, a disorder that afflicts roughly eight million Americans. Typical problems include being unable to stay organized, not being detail oriented, or making careless mistakes.
Rafael Klorman, M.D., Adult ADHD Expert: ‘When there is a pattern of continuous forgetting and failure to meet deadlines, obligations, and commitments, then an individual is having serious difficulty.”
The disorder runs in families, but no one knows what causes it. However, the personal and social costs of not getting diagnosed can be dramatic. Adults with ADHD are three times more likely to suffer from stress or depression. They have fewer stable relationships and are twice as likely to be divorced or separated. And they tend to change jobs more frequently.