Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) affects both children and adults. It is one of the most common childhood disorders, but it can persist into adulthood for many people. At Altum Health, we only treat adults who suspect that they have this condition, using robust diagnostic tools to help us make an informed assessment.
ADHD can create a series of challenges for the individual, including persistent distractibility, inattention, forgetfulness, difficulty with organisation and following instructions, physical and mental restlessness, and impulsive behaviour and/or speech. In women, symptoms may be different or more masked, so the condition can be more challenging to diagnose.
Almost everyone will experience some symptoms similar to ADHD at some stage in their life, but if your symptoms are so severe that they interfere with your ability to function on a daily basis, we recommend you speak with a healthcare professional.
ADHD symptoms begin in childhood but in some cases, they’re not recognised or diagnosed until adulthood.
Many ADHD traits are also common symptoms of mental health problems, such as anxiety or depression, which can sometimes lead to a misdiagnosis. However, evidence has shown that if you have ADHD, you are in fact more likely to experience other mental health issues.
Adults with ADHD can have difficulty:
- Focusing on, and completing, a task
- Prioritising tasks, multitasking, and/or managing their time effectively
- Planning and organising
- Following instructions
- Coping with stress
- Sitting still
- Waiting for their turn
Adults with this condition may also feel restless, impatient, impulsive, and more inclined to take risks. A low frustration tolerance, frequent mood swings, and a hot temper are also quite common.
If you suspect you or someone you know could have ADHD, we can help.
The ADHD assessment
At Altum Health, assessments are carried out by experienced clinicians trained to assess, and treat, ADHD in adults.
The assessment is done in two stages.
First, we will ask you to complete an ADHD Screening Bundle.
The Screening Bundle contains questionnaires to be completed by you and your parent/partner/friend.
The completed questionnaires are then scored and reviewed in advance of the second stage.
The second stage is the Diagnostic Interview for ADHD in Adults (DIVA); the ‘gold standard’ interview tool used to assess and diagnose ADHD in adults.
DIVA is a 90-minute assessment, which can be done either face-to-face or online. During this meeting, we will also ask about your family history, your mental health history, your health and wellbeing, and your developmental history. This will take an additional 60 to 90 minutes.
Using the information from the DIVA and the results of the Screening Bundle, we will produce a written report to summarise our findings, make a diagnosis and outline the treatment options available, including medication and psychological treatment, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).
If you do choose to trial medication, you will need to see a psychiatrist and have certain physical investigations completed by your GP, for example, blood pressure and heart rate. Your psychiatrist will then see you again for 2 – 3 review sessions to make sure your medication regime is on the right track.
If you are experiencing a mental health problem or suspect you may have ADHD, please book a consultation to discuss our ADHD options.