Can ADHD Be Outgrown or Cured?
Even though most people don't outgrow ADHD, people do learn to
adapt and live fulfilling lives. Mark, Lisa, and Henry are making
good lives for themselves--nnot by being cured, but by developing
their personal strengths. With effective combinations of medicine,
new skills, and emotional support, people with ADHD can develop
ways to control their attention and minimize their disruptive
behaviors. Like Henry, they may find that by structuring tasks
and controlling their environment, they can achieve personal goals.
Like Mark, they may learn to channel their excess energy into
sports and other high energy activities. And like Lisa, they can
identify career options that build on their strengths and abilities.
As they grow up, with appropriate help from parents and clinicians,
children with ADHD become better able to suppress their hyperactivity
and to channel it into more socially acceptable behaviors, like
physical exercise or fidgeting. And although we know that half
of all children with ADHD will still show signs of the problem
into adulthood, we also know that the medications and therapy
that help children also work for adults.
All people with ADHD have natural talents and abilities that
they can draw on to create fine lives and careers for themselves.
In fact, many people with ADHD even feel that their patterns of
behavior give them unique, often unrecognized, advantages. People
with ADHD tend to be outgoing and ready for action. Because of
their drive for excitement and stimulation, many become successful
in business, sports, construction, and public speaking. Because
of their ability to think about many things at once, many have
won acclaim as artists and inventors. Many choose work that gives
them freedom to move around and release excess energy. But some
find ways to be effective in quieter, more sedentary careers.
Sally, a computer programmer, found that she thinks best when
she wears headphones to reduce distracting noises. Like Henry,
some people strive to increase their organizational skills. Others
who own their own business find it useful to hire support staff
to provide day-to-day management.
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