How Life Affects Your ADHD

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I just got back from a wonderful week or so spent in Michigan visiting my daughter Sarah, her husband, and their brand new son, Robbie. (Our first grandchild!)

Like all of us, Sarah has Attention Deficit Disorder. And with all of the lifestyle changes, she has some new challenges in dealing with her ADHD.

Now maybe you’re not a new mom, but I bet that you can still relate to some of the changes that Sarah’s new life presents.

There’s been a big change in her life. Sure, she had a baby, but a new job, a new place to live, even a change in schedule can mean big changes when it comes to how well you manage your ADHD.

Try to keep as normalcy in your life as possible. Sure there are things you can’t change, but work hard to reinforce any habits or routines that you had before, and also begin to establish some new ones.

Her hormones are out of control. Once we begin to go through puberty, hormonal changes are pretty much a fact of life for most women. Our monthly cycles, pregnancy and childbirth, and even menopause all cause changes in our hormones.

Recognize that your hormone levels may be messing with your ADHD symptoms. Try and figure out how it affects you most. It may be your emotions or it may cause you to be more forgetful. Come up with strategies that help you compensate for these issues. Also consider saving important tasks for the times of the day when you are most alert and productive.

She had to give up her medication and caffeine. If you rely on medication to help your ADHD symptoms, doing without it can be really hard. And eliminating caffeine can make things even harder.

Alertness, focus and memory are things that are often affected by our ADHD. Caffeine, while not a substitute for ADHD medications, can do some towards helping you stay focused and alert. If that is not an option, consider herbal remedies such as Gingko, Ginseng and even Rosemary. Be sure to consult your doctor first, especially if you are pregnant or nursing.

General lifestyle improvements will help you manage your ADHD symptoms, too.

Do your best to eat a healthy diet with plenty of lean protein and water. Get as much rest as you can. And take some time out each day to exercise, even if that means parking your car further away from the mall door.

It’s always important to take good care of yourself, but when your life suddenly turns upside down, it becomes a necessity. Be sure to give yourself what you need.

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Lacy Estelle

Lacy Estelle is the writer of and the Podcast host for An ADD Woman.

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27 Responses

  1. You can certainly see your expertise in the work you write. The world hopes for more passionate writers such as you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. All the time go after your heart.

  2. It’s difficult as a parent to approach the subject of A.D.H.D. without feeling like you’re falling prey to the trendiness of the diagnosis. However, I can’t shake the feeling that my just-7-year-old son has some attention challenges that are making his life more difficult. While he gets good grades in a challenging private school, has many friends, and is not at all aggressive, his teachers say he really struggles to maintain focus. When should a parent make the decision that outside intervention/medical consideration is truly warranted — and how do you ensure that the person you consult isn’t overdiagnosing? Such a dilemma for parents these days.

  3. I agree with you. It can be hard to know who to trust and what to do, especially with such a young child. The fact that his teachers see his struggles is very valuable. It tells you that your instincts are good. Kids (people) with ADHD are typically above average in intelligence. Right now your son is good at connecting the dots – taking what he does know, looking at the material and being able to fill in the blanks when he wasn’t paying attention. That will catch up to him sooner or later. 3rd or 4th grade is often the first hurdle.

    I would advise you to keep an eye on him and continue to get input from his teachers. In the meantime, you might look for one or more professionals who can help you when you might need them. A psychiatrist, possibly, and maybe someone trained to work with kids with ADHD. Often that is a psychologist or social worker.

    Also be sure to check out my other blog: ADD Student for help.

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  10. Please help me. I am 47 years old. I am going back to school to become a Health Information Tech. I was a CNA for awhile. I just starting to get back pain. So I want to change my career. I have been studying hard for my classes. I will read my assignments then when I am done reading which I do take alot of time not rushing. Then I will quiz myself and I will not remember what I read. I just want to cry. My kids got tested for ADHD and they are tested very high. I do not have insurance. I want to get tested but no one will help me out. Please help me


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