Adult ADD/ADHD Specialist

Agdel Hernandez Colon, MD

Psychiatrist located in Downtown Manhattan, New York, NY

If you can’t seem to get organized, it’s hard to control your emotions, or you frequently misplace things, you may have adult ADD/ADHD. Although it’s often diagnosed in childhood, ADD/ADHD also affects adults. Dr. Agdel Hernandez Colon has extensive experience working with adults, whether they’ve never been diagnosed or were recognized as having ADD/ADHD when they were children. To learn about medical and psychotherapy treatments that can help, call the office in New York City’s Financial District or book an appointment online.

Adult ADD/ADHD Q & A

What is ADD/ADHD?

Attention deficit disorder (ADD) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are neurobiological disorders that affect areas of the brain responsible for attention, sensorimotor function, and executive function, which is the ability to control and organize your thoughts and regulate behavior.

Although ADD/ADHD is often diagnosed in childhood, it’s estimated that the disorder persists into adulthood for an estimated 30-70% of children. Many people aren’t diagnosed until they reach adulthood and finally find help for the symptoms they’ve struggled with since they were kids.

In some cases, it’s possible that ADD/ADHD may not begin until adulthood. One study found that 90% of adults with ADD/ADHD had no history of the disorder when they were children.

What are the symptoms of ADD/ADHD?

This disorder is characterized by three symptom categories: inattentiveness, impulsivity, and hyperactivity. People diagnosed with ADD/ADHD all struggle with symptoms of inattention. Those with ADD, however, don’t have the hyperactivity or impulsivity symptoms.

In adults, these symptoms are seen in behaviors such as:

  • Constantly on the go
  • Feeling restless or having a hard time relaxing
  • Disorganization
  • Frequently losing things
  • Starting projects but never finishing them
  • Feeling like you can’t turn off your brain
  • Often late to appointments or missing deadlines

How do adult ADD/ADHD symptoms differ from children?

The DSM-5, the official guideline for diagnosing ADD/ADHD, notes that adults have the same symptoms as children. Although that’s true, as more psychiatrists work with adults and additional studies are published, new information is emerging.

Research shows that adults may have more significant deficits in executive functioning compared to children. They also have a hard time regulating their emotions.

Adults with ADD/ADHD often have low working memory. When you lack this ability to store information temporarily, it’s hard to stick with a set of instructions and follow through with your plan of action.

How is ADD/ADHD treated?

After performing a thorough evaluation to determine whether you have ADD or ADHD, Dr. Hernandez Colon works with you to create a customized treatment plan that deals with your daily challenges.

The primary treatments for ADD/ADHD are psychotherapy and prescription stimulant or nonstimulant medications.

Stimulant medications improve your attention by boosting levels of brain chemicals that are needed for thinking and attention. Psychotherapy can help you learn to deal with the daily challenges such as organizational problems and emotional control.

Adults with ADD/ADHD can improve their symptoms and their quality of life with treatment from Dr. Hernandez Colon. Call the office or book an appointment online today.