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‘I thought I was a loser, now I have the answer’: rise in adult ADHD

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‘I thought I was a loser, now I have the answer’: rise in adult ADHD

Catherine Cook had a sudden moment of clarity the day her 10-year-old son was diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). “They told me it was hereditary and I thought, ‘Uh-oh, that’s me,’ the Sydney mother-of-two said.

Ms Cook, 34, has a vague memory of being told she had attention deficit disorder when she was seven or eight, “but my parents thought the paediatrician was just wacky so we didn’t do anything about it”. She was the teenager who could never finish a task, rushed her assignments at the last minute and left school at the beginning of year 11.

Rising numbers of Australian adults are being diagnosed with ADHD, tearing at the fallacy that it’s just something children outgrow.

Chairman of ADHD Australia, Professor Michael Kohn said there had been “exponential growth” in the number of adults seeking ADHD testing as the public was becoming more aware of the condition. “Our helpline received one call a week about adult assessments five years ago. Now our email help line receives three inquiries a day. They’ll have ADHD traits that weren’t picked up in childhood or they were dismissed as the naughty kid,” he said.

Excerpt from the SMH article, 3 November 2019 by Kate Aubusson.

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