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> If you don't know much about ADHD , it's not what you think it is.

Honest question, I don't know much about ADHD. What's ADHD actually is?






As someone that was diagnosed with ADHD at 37, ADHD is what society calls it when somebody has very little tolerance for paying attention to stuff they find boring.

But seriously, I agree with the square peg / round hole comments. I don't believe ADHD to be an illness because there are plenty of environments where I could thrive, the trick was it had to involve doing something I loved. Fortunately for me, I loved computer programming.


It a literal brain development impairment. We can look at the bright side, I do too, but it is a biological difference in our brain construction from the norm, and it has wide ranging impacts that go far beyond our ability to do work.

Do you have extreme bouts of emotional distress? Emotional / angry outbursts? Blurt things out that get you into trouble? Experience difficulty with dating? Lose shit constantly? Participate in risky / dangerous / mid-guided behaviors?

ADHD is a big disorder. Look into it: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=SCAGc-rkIfo


Thank you, it was such a great video. Worth the 3 hours.

ADHD is some degree of impairement in the ability to self-direct your own behavior, also known as executive function.

Yep. This is an interesting article about the neurobiology behind it, getting into dopamine related reward network / neurochemical deficit theories.

https://psychscenehub.com/psychinsights/neurobiology-of-adhd...


Isn't that at odds with your previous comment?

> Inability to sustain concentration is not a temperament. It's a neurological impairement.

The impression the article gave me is that ADHD is more the inability to choose what you focus on, not an inability to sustain concentration?


I don't want to speak for others but that is exactly the way I experience it. I can sink deep into an unimportant but complex analytical problem after lunch and the next time I take note of time passing, it's 3AM and I forgot to drink, eat, go home, exercise, love, and sleep.

The amount of focus I'm capable of is not the problem. The problem is putting it to use where I want to, rather than where it, by pure chance, happens to end up for the day.

It also applies to the small stuff. Someone asks me to bake a cake and I think it's probably best if I know what temperature it should bake at. An hour later they ask me how the cake is coming along and I realise I know a lot about the chemistry of baking but I haven't brought out the flour yet, and I no longer have time to shower, shave, send that important email, and clean up after baking.

I go back and forth between viewing it as an inability to perceive time and an affliction of directing behaviour. Perhaps they're two lenses through which to view the same thing, and I haven't yet discovered their symmetries. (Only vaguely aware of them -- directing behaviour to achieve future goals requires the ability to perceive time acutely.)


Inability to sustain attention/concentration is just one of the most common facets of ADHD.

Yes, you could have more/others impairments in your executive function than just attention. Impulsivity is commonly measured as well. ADHD is really an umbrella term for several syndromes.

I disagree with the notion that "inability to choose" is necessarily a definitive part of ADHD . It often is, and is common, but it's not unique to ADHD at all.

It can also be due to anxiety, PTSD, all sorts of other issues, and people with those issues improve on anxiolytics/tranquilizers, instead of stimulants.


> It can also be due to anxiety, PTSD, all sorts of other issues, and people with those issues improve on anxiolytics/tranquilizers, instead of stimulants.

Is this true? What sort of anxiolytics? I’m pretty sure I’m diagnosable adhd-pi but I have anxiety that decreases with low dosage adderall.


Read up the studies. I'd say it's probably best studied in schizophrenia, they have all kinds of cognitive improvements on antipsychotics, rather very unpleasant drugs.

Dopaminergics like amphetamines, ritalin or bromantane do help with anxiety, it's common knowledge, but I don't think the effect is sustainable long term, at least not that I've heard. More common for that effect to fade away with time on chronic dosages and more of a jitterness surface later on.


> ADHD is really an umbrella term for several syndromes.

That does seem to muddy the water a bit, doesn't it? Thanks for the detailed response!


It certainly does.

In these comments you could see anything from people that think it's not an illness to people who have secondary impairments due to obstructed airway at night.

And they are all probably right to some degree.

This stuff - attention, executive function, ability to self regulate and direct your own attention - meta-cognition, if you will - is very poorly understood. Treatments are very crude, we will eventually see them as barbaric.

It probably is one of the youngest developments, evolution-wise.

Fascinating stuff.


>The impression the article gave me is that ADHD is more the inability to choose what you focus on, not an inability to sustain concentration?

This aligns pretty well with the definition of executive function.




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