Can You Outgrow ADHD?

It is estimated that around 4 to 5% of U.S. adults are living with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. But, with that being said, it’s thought that many adults who have this condition don’t actually get diagnosed or treated for it, which means there may be more people who have ADHD than we are aware of. 


The adults who do know they have ADHD might have been aware of their condition since childhood, since that is when it is most often detected. Some, though, might have thought that they would outgrow the condition. But most research points to the fact that it is rarely outgrown. ADHD symptoms can continue into adolescence and adulthood, although the symptoms might look different at different stages of life. So, what can you expect as an adult living with ADHD?illustration of a multicolored brain with the article title

What Is ADHD?

ADHD is one of the most common neurodevelopmental disorders of childhood. Symptoms include inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity, which are considered chronic and debilitating, and can lead to low self-esteem, among other issues. It is often first identified in school-age children when it leads to disruption in class or problems with school work. It commonly affects boys more often and/or is diagnosed more in boys than in girls. 


One study found that ADHD symptoms are often worse in children aged 6 to 8, and gradually decline around age 11. Symptoms of hyperactivity and impulsivity were more likely to decline with age. While symptoms of inattention were more likely to persist.


People with ADHD of the inattentive type have trouble paying attention to details, are easily distracted, often have trouble organizing or finishing tasks, and often forget routine chores (such as paying bills on time or returning phone calls).

ADHD in Adulthood

Many children diagnosed with ADHD will continue to have the disorder later in life, and some may require ongoing treatment. In fact, many people with ADHD might not be diagnosed until their teenage or adult years. This is especially true for girls and women, who are more likely to experience inattentive ADHD. Which tends to be harder to detect. Typically, adults with ADHD are treated with medicine, psychotherapy, or a combination of both. 


illustration of the outline of a brain written on a chalkboard with ADHD written underneathSymptoms in adulthood can be more varied and present in more subtle ways than in childhood. Some examples include:

  • Disorganization
  • Impulsive decision-making
  • Internal restlessness
  • Wandering attention
  • Procrastination


Symptoms will not get worse with age. Mainly because adults are equipped with more coping skills and resources to help manage their symptoms. 

Health Insurance & ADHD

ADHD treatment falls under “mental health treatment” benefits. So, if your health insurance plan doesn’t include mental health coverage, you won’t be covered for ADHD treatment. If you have a plan that doesn’t have the coverage you need, or if you’re not sure what plan is right for you, speak to an EZ agent! EZ agents are highly trained and knowledgeable. And will sort through all available plans to make sure that you’re completely covered no matter what. 


We offer a wide range of health insurance plans from top-rated insurance companies in every state. And because we work with so many companies and can offer all of the plans available in your area, we can find you a plan that saves you a lot of money – even hundreds of dollars – even if you don’t qualify for a subsidy. There is no obligation, or hassle, just free quotes on all available plans in your area. To get free instant quotes, simply enter your zip code in the bar above. Or to speak to a local agent, call 888-350-1890.

Can ADHD Get Worse As You Age?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, often gets misdiagnosed in young people. While around 11% of children ages 4-17 in the U.S. have received a diagnosis of ADHD, studies show that this is just a small percentage of people who actually have ADHD. This misdiagnosis, and failure to treat ADHD, can end up causing bigger issues for people when they get older: those with undiagnosed or untreated ADHD have a higher risk of developing mental health conditions such as depression. Symptoms can become worse after midlife, and continue to worsen with regular age-related cognitive decline. Don’t ignore the symptoms, speak to your doctor before your condition gets worse.

What ADHD Looks Like In Older Adults

An estimated 3% of older adults have been diagnosed with ADHD, although the number of those who are actually living with the condition might be higher. While some studies show that ADHD doesn’t necessarily get worse with age, and that some adults can outgrow their symptoms, this is not the case for everyone. In fact, some people will experience more severe or intense symptoms during their day-to-day activities when they get older, since the more stress you encounter, the worse your ADHD symptoms can get. That means adults with ADHD will need more support than the average aging adult.

When Do Symptoms Get Worse?

Symptoms of ADHD generally change during the transition from childhood to adolescence and young adulthood, again when a person enters midlife, and yet again during older age. Often, older adults with ADHD will have issues with things like:

older man with his head dispersing as puzzle pieces

  • Misplacing items
  • Forgetting words
  • Talking too much
  • Having trouble following conversations
  • Difficulty maintaining their home
  • Difficulty maintaining relationships
  • Memory issues
  • Not getting things done
  • Time-management challenges
  • Poor sleep patterns
  • Poor nutritional habits

In addition, a 2012 study found that 62% of those with ADHD had at least one other disorder, such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Eating disorders
  • Bipolar disorder

Eventually, if left untreated, ADHD can lead to serious mental health issues. Specifically, older adults with ADHD have an increased risk of developing depression and dementia. “Older people with ADHD who have never been diagnosed may suddenly fear that they’re developing dementia because they are absentminded and forgetful,” says Kathleen Nadeau, Ph.D.

Managing & Treating ADHD

illustration of a head with scrambled brain and a person grabbing a rope from the brain and pulling
Cognitive behavioral therapy can help manage symptoms of ADHD as you age.

If you suspect that you have ADHD, speak to your doctor. The best way to help manage your condition is to seek treatment as soon as possible: the earlier you get help, the more manageable the condition is. You can do this by going to a support group, or attending cognitive behavioral therapy. This type of therapy can help raise your awareness when symptoms occur, help you combat feelings of low self-esteem to reduce feelings of depression, and teach you how to cope with stress and increase productivity.

If you need more help, doctors can prescribe medications such as amphetamines and methylphenidate to help deal with ADHD. And in rare cases, doctors will prescribe antidepressants.

If you’re on Medicare, getting medications and therapy for ADHD will be partially covered, but you will still have out-of-pocket expenses, such as your Part B deductible and 20% Part B coinsurance, which can add up to a lot. It’s worth looking into a Medicare Supplement Plan to save as much money as you can, so speak to an EZ agent for all of your options. EZ’s agents work with the top-rated insurance companies in the nation and can compare plans in minutes for you at no cost. To get free instant quotes for plans that cover your current doctors, simply enter your zip code in the bar on the side, or to speak to a licensed agent, call 888-753-7207.

High Energy Or ADHD?

Almost every parent with an extremely energetic child has thought it: is my child just super energetic, or do they have Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder(ADHD)? The number of children diagnosed with ADHD has grown substantially over the past 20 years, nearly tripling over the past decade. Children are naturally active and inquisitive, and while a high percentage of children with ADHD are very energetic, high energy is not enough to diagnose ADHD. Some children are just hyperactive. So, what is the difference between the two? 

One main difference between a child with hyperactivity and one with ADHD is that ADHD will affect the child’s ability to function in school and social settings. Here are some of the other differences between the two:

Symptoms Of ADHD

  • Difficulty paying attention in tasks
  • Difficulty organizing tasks and activities

    Caucasian little girl sitting at school desk looking out of the window.
    A symptom of ADHD is difficulty paying attention in tasks.
  • Often loses things
  • Easily distracted
  • Forgetful in daily activities
  • Does not seem to listen when spoken to directly
  • Fails to pay close attention to details, and makes careless mistakes
  • Avoids tasks that require sustained mental effort

Symptoms Of Hyperactivity

  • Fidgets with hands or feet, and squirms in seat
  • Talks excessively
  • Runs or climbs excessively in inappropriate situations
  • Leaves their seat in the classroom when they should be seated
  • Difficulty playing or engaging in leisure activities quietly
  • Appears to always be on the go

You might have a child that exhibits some of these signs, and it can be hard to tell if they have ADHD or are just hyperactive. A good solution for this is if their school teacher or daycare comes to you with concerns. If your child finds it hard to sit still, then they are displaying signs of ADHD. However, some kids are just hyper. If your child is like that, but is able to both control their impulses in school and pay attention, then they are just an energetic child. 

Caucasian little boy sitting on a bench with his back against some books.
If your child’s overactivity is negatively affecting their ability to learn and behave in school, then you should be concerned.

Over the years, more and more children have been diagnosed with ADHD, and some may be given medication that is unnecessary. Some children are just naturally energetic, and it is completely normal for preschoolers to have short attention spans. ADHD symptoms constantly disrupt daily life and relationships. If your child’s overactivity is negatively affecting their ability to learn and behave in school, then you should be concerned. As mentioned before, teachers will bring it to your attention if there is an issue. If you are concerned about your child’s behavior, then make an appointment with your family doctor. The doctor will go over a list of questions and observe your child’s behavior. ADHD runs in the family, so the doctor will also look into family history. If your child does have ADHD, then the earlier you find out, the more tools and support you will have to help them become more successful in school and life.