It’s no secret that having ADHD doesn’t mean that a child can’t find success in sport, school, and life. Yet finding that blueprint for success can sometimes be easier said than done and getting tested is oftentimes the first step towards molding that blueprint.
ADHD is far from a one size fits all; each individual diagnosed with ADHD responds uniquely to different environments and a path to success looks different for each individual. In fact, there are different types of ADHD diagnoses that vary quite a bit from each other.
That being said, there are common signs and behaviors that are often associated with children who have ADHD. These behaviors are by no means an exact indicator, but if multiple ones are displayed, getting your child tested for ADHD might not be a bad idea.
Per Premier’s head of ADHD services Dr. Janet Finlayson, here are five common behaviors associated with children who may have Inattentive ADHD.
Your child makes a lot of careless mistakes.
Let’s face it, we all make mistakes, regardless of whether we have ADHD or not. Yet a pattern of small yet repetitive mistakes are often a common behavior associated with Inattentive ADHD. Common examples include making silly errors on tests or homework, simple spelling or grammatical errors, and misreading directions or instructions.
Your child doesn’t seem to listen when spoken to directly.
Again, this is not an uncommon behavior for teenagers when it comes to responding to parental instruction. Yet if it becomes a pattern in other environments such as school, sports, or music, there is reason to consider ADHD testing. Chances are, your child isn’t purposefully not paying attention. More than likely they’re hyper-focused on something else or are having a difficult time retaining information…and they’re aware that there’s a problem too.
Your child becomes easily distracted.
In a world of flourishing technology and outside noise, becoming distracted has become easier than ever…both for individuals with ADHD and those who don’t have it. For those with ADHD, distractions can be both external and internal; external distractors could include noises, visuals, and other stimulants while internal distractors may include thoughts, feelings, and emotions. Regardless of what leads to the distractions, individuals with Inattentive ADHD often become easily distracted and struggle to stay on task, often resulting in a great deal of overwhelmingness.
Your child often loses or forgets things.
Homework, sports equipment, you name it. It’s normal for children to occasionally forget things before heading out the door for school or practice. Yet if it becomes a habit, ADHD could be in the picture. Ask yourself the question “Would my child be able to remember this item consistently if I were not reminding them?” If not, testing could be a valuable option.
Your child has a difficult time completing and/or finishing tasks.
Starting is attainable, checking off the box is more difficult. Individuals with Inattentive ADHD often struggle to complete tasks including (but not limited to) homework, cleaning their room, projects at school, or following through on commitments. This is oftentimes because individuals with ADHD struggle to keep a long-term attention span, despite being able to hyper-focus on certain topics/tasks for short periods of time.
The Bottom Line
An ADHD diagnosis doesn’t mean that your child can’t accomplish their goals, hopes, and dreams…far from it. Yet living with ADHD without a diagnosis can often create roadblocks in a person’s pursuit to being the best version of themself.
Not every child has ADHD, but if your child frequently displays behaviors commonly associated with ADHD, testing could be the first step towards creating a blueprint towards success.
Premier offers ADHD screeners for both adults and teens that take five minutes and are free of charge. Premier also offers a free 15 minute phone consultation with one of our clinical psychologists to discuss if ADHD testing is the right fit for you or your child.