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The A-Z on ADHD

Thomas Bauer, Healthy Living Writer

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A common misconception about ADHD is that anyone with it is hyperactive, overly outgoing, and annoying. This however is an outrageous stereotype. ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. The hyperactivity aspect of ADHD–coming from someone who has it–is not the dominating characteristic of ADHD. For the most part, my ADHD is a struggle with attention and concentration.

“Imagine sitting down to do an important task, you have to do it, it’s simple and you just have to get it done. However, you just can’t, even though you know how important it is. Even though you want to do it, you just can’t. That is ADHD.”  -Anonymous

This comment from a fellow sufferer perfectly describes the daily struggle with ADHD. When most people are faced with a simple task they don’t want to do, it becomes more difficult to focus and stay on task. This feeling is one that is always present with people who have ADHD; my mind wanders from one thought to another without even noticing. Even while writing this article my mind travels from weekend plans to cars.

Although it’s difficult to stay on topic for the most part, there are solutions. ADHD medication, which I’ve taken for six years. This medication, however, is not perfect. Although, my grades increased phenomenally, I started to have new problems. It began with a loss of appetite then stunted growth, loss of sleep, restlessness, shaking, stress, and depression. All this just to be able to advance in school at the same rate as other students.

These side effects were identical to ones expressed to me from friends in the same boat as me. So for the last month I’ve stopped taking my medication, even though staying on task has become much more difficult, and since then I’ve made progress towards my appetite and happiness.

However, some of the damage that living with ADHD causes isn’t as easy to fix. The truth is, when people find you annoying for an overly active imagination, making and keeping friends is a struggle. Growing up thinking your success hinges on a medication, and that you will never be equal to your peers isn’t exactly ideal. Worst of all are the people who are quick to call ADHD “a made up excuse” for people like me to have special treatment.

The truth is, even though I took my medication for my school provincial tests, it took me over an hour and a half longer to write my essay. This is not an excuse, it is an undermining issue that causes thousands of people like me with ADHD to struggle with everyday tasks.

Although, it is a serious issue, building a schedule and taking extra time can make tasks easier. Now is the time to end the stereotypes about ADHD.

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The student news site of Kelowna Secondary School
The A-Z on ADHD