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Researchers from the University of Washington School of Medicine have found that most children with Attention deficit hyperactive disorder (ADHD) do not outgrow the condition as previously thought. About 5-10% of the population have ADHD.

ADHD can go into remission in adulthood 

While scientists once believed that about half of the children with ADHD outgrow it, researchers have found that this only applies to 10% of them. Others could keep having symptoms even as they grow older. Most children with ADHD experience residual symptoms as they go into young adulthood. However, in 90% of the children with the disorder, parents and physicians should expect intermittent periods of remission.

Rather than disappear, the researchers say that ADHD manifests differently in adulthood. ADHD can also go into remission, which makes it seem like the patient has overcome it.

According to Margaret Sibley, a lead researcher and associate professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at UW, people with ADHD should know that there will be times in their lives when things will feel unmanageable and others when they can be more in control.

Physicians usually use two symptoms to detect ADHD. The first one is forgetfulness, disorganization or finding it hard to focus or pay attention. The other symptom of ADHD is impulsivity and hyperactivity. In this case, children are unable to stop climbing or running around. For adults, the second symptom can involve indecisiveness and verbal impulsivity. Patients display ADHD symptoms differently depending on their stage of life.

How researchers conducted the study

To come to their conclusion, the researchers followed 558 patients with ADHD for about 16 years. The study participants were between the ages of 8 and 25 when the study began. Researchers assessed their condition every two years.

This study is different from others on ADHD as other studies only followed up on the patients once in adulthood. The scientists in the studies did not see any signs of the disorder during their follow-ups hence thought it had passed. This is why most people thought ADHD disappeared in 50% of people.

Doctors use therapy and medication to treat ADHD. There are also a few coping skills that patients can learn. When the disorder starts to interfere with your everyday life, then it is time to seek help.