What is ADHD?

ADHD is short for Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder.
ADHD is a neurodevelopmental disorder that affects the way the brain grows and develops, although we aren’t entirely sure what causes it.

ADHD is a lifelong disorder. It doesn’t go away, but it often requires treatment.


ADHD usually appears in early childhood, although it is not always diagnosed at this time. It is difficult to predict who will have ADHD, but it does seem to have a strong genetic component. This means that it commonly appears in other family members and can be passed down from one generation to another, much like eye colour or height.

ADHD in Adolescents

Adolescence, the “in-between period” for childhood and adulthood, is a challenging time. Adolescents with ADHD can face even greater challenges as life’s demands increase – along with their independence. Issues with attention and self-control can present new challenges inside and outside of school, such as:

Risk-taking behaviours

  • Experimenting with drugs and alcohol
  • Sexual activity
  • Driving accidents
  • Impulsivity


  • Low self-esteem and negative beliefs about their abilities
  • Trouble taking credit for their own success

Relationships with family and friends

  • Family conflict
  • Arguments with adults
  • Difficulty making/keeping friends

Academic performance

  • Lack of focus during class
  • Difficulties organizing themselves
  • Higher risk of expulsion and low grades
Consistent ADHD symptom control can help adolescents stay on track during this important period of their lives. If you have a teen with ADHD, book a check-in with their doctor to evaluate their symptoms and treatment plan.

If you’re an adolescent living with ADHD,
check out these tips to help you manage your ADHD symptoms.


There are many myths associated with ADHD. It is important to separate fact from fiction so that we can better understand what people with ADHD are truly experiencing. The more we understand, the better we can help them.