We know that with the right support, knowledge and environment all adults with ADHD can learn how to thrive and to live their best lives.
In our HOW TO THRIVE WITH ADHD section we have included videos, podcasts, links, personal opinion, articles and summary boxes. You can click on the images to visit the sections for in-depth information or you can have a look at the summary boxes below and follow links from there.
If you would like to discuss any of these topics in greater detail please get in touch with us. And as with anything on the site, if there is something that you feel we should add please also contact us.
Connect with other ADHDers on social media. I have found Twitter, in
particular, to be a great place for this. Have a look at our Twitter page for ideas on who to follow or search under hashtags like #ADHDTwitter, #AdultADHD, #ADHD etc.
Join an online community of ADHDers. See our INSPIRATIONAL ADHDERS page for details
of some of the best of these including a UK membership site and Slack and Discord communities.
Women run a free monthly support group for women from all over the world.
Creativity is important for everyone, there have even been studies showing that it can help you live longer. It has also been shown to reduce stress, help motivate you, make you more productive, help clarify your thoughts and feelings and bring people together.
From this list we can see that many of the things that ADHDers struggle with are here. However, the good news is that studies have also shown that ADHDers tend to be more creative than those without the condition. The key is to make time to harness your creativity and that doesn't just mean being creative in an artistic way.
Medication for ADHD can be life-changing. The medicines licenced in the UK are a range of stimulants and one non-stimulant.
- methylphenidate (brand names Concerta XL, Ritalin etc.)
- dexamfetamine (Amfexa)
- lisdexamfetamine (Elvanse)
- Atomoxetine (Strattera)
Only a specialist can prescribe medication. Before you start you will have your blood pressure taken and may also have an ECG to ensure that you have no heart problems.
It can take awhile to find the right drug & dose; a qualified individual should work with you through this process.
A combination of therapy and medication can be very benefical for ADHD or if you can't take ADHD medication (or don't want to) therapy and/or coaching could be extremely helpful.
It is important to find a therapist/coach who has experience of working with ADHD.The most popular type of therapy for ADHD is CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy).
ADHD coaches support their clients by 'developing a comprehensive understanding of both the nature of their ADHD and ADHD’s impact on their quality of life.'
We know that ADHDers lack enough dopamine, exercise is a great way to get this.
“Exercise also produces endorphins, the ‘feel good’ chemical in the brain, thus, exercise is nature’s antidepressant. Exercise also helps get rid of restless energy".
"Even a single session of moving your body can make you more motivated, increase your brainpower, give you energy, and help you feel less confused. It acts on your brain in a lot of the same ways as your ADHD medication."
Sleep disturbance is very common amongst ADHDers. This may be difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, restless sleep, or difficulty waking up in the morning.
Studies have also found that around 44% of people with ADHD also have Restless Leg Syndrome (RLS) which can cause problems when trying to sleep.
Possible solutions include things like taking melatonin; herbs that help promote sleep; medication for RLS...
There is so much information our there when it comes to nutrition, many of it conflicting; but what seems to be widely agreed upon is the importance of protein and fatty acids for our ADHD brains.
Stimulant medications can act as appetite suppressants so it can be very important for us to keep an eye on what and when we are eating; otherwise our ADHD symptoms can become exacerbated.
ADHD has also been linked to an increased risk of eating disorders - this can be because of our impulsivity or underactive 'reward centre' in the brain. We don't have as much dopamine so we may crave more of the 'reward' food than someone without ADHD.
Creating the right environment can be very beneficial for learning to thrive with ADHD. This includes our home, our workplace and the people we choose to spend our time with.
"Not everyone with ADHD will need extra support in the workplace, and those who do may need only small changes –known under the Equality Act 2010 as ‘reasonable adjustments’ –to help them to work effectively." The Scottish ADHD Coalition have written this guide to ADHD in the Workplace.
In ADHD 2.0 Drs Ratey & Hallowell talk about the importance of creating "stellar environments". They say there are 5 areas of your environment that you have to focus on: daily structure, nutrition, sleep, populate your world with positivity, and accept and find the right help.