ADHD and anxiety disorders seem to be similar in genetic makeup, making researchers believe there may be a link between the two. PsychCentral recently published an article outlining new genetic research that links ADHD and anxiety disorders. It’s been shown that around 30 percent of those with ADHD have also been diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. Anxiety has a way of increasing and worsening the symptoms of ADHD because it messes with focus–something ADHD already makes difficult.
The Link Between ADHD and Anxiety
Researchers think ADHD can worsen or even produce anxiety. If someone’s ADHD is making daily life difficult and disorienting, that could easily produce an amount of anxiety that could eventually become overwhelming. It’s thought that ADHD cannot create an anxiety disorder, though someone with ADHD has a higher chance of developing one.
It’s important to recognize when your child is struggling with ADHD and anxiety in order to help them reach their full potential and overcome their challenges.
Different types of ADHD and anxiety
According to Mayo Clinic, there are three types of ADHD:
- Inattentive: The symptoms of predominantly inattentive ADHD majorly fall under being inattentive, such as getting distracted easily, having trouble organizing tasks, trouble with focusing, etc.
- Hyperactive-Impulsive: These symptoms largely fall under impulsive and hyperactive behavior, such as frequent fidgeting, talking too much, having issues staying still, etc.
- Combination: This is the most common type of ADHD and it’s a mix of symptoms from inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive.
According to Mayo Clinic, there are many types of anxiety disorders common to youth:
- Generalized Anxiety Disorder: This is excessive and reoccurring worry or stress over events or activities–even regular ones. Often creates a feeling of being out of control or affects how someone feels physically.
- Panic Disorder: This is characterized by multiple episodes of intense fear or terror that escalate to a peak in minutes. It often creates feelings of helplessness, shortness of breath, rapid breathing, etc.
- Separation Anxiety Disorder: This is a childhood disorder in which a child has an escalated amount of anxiety related to separating from parents or guardians.
Social Anxiety Disorder (Social Phobia): This is characterized by large amounts of anxiety surrounding social situations due to a fear of being embarrassed or judged.
For more information about ADHD and anxiety, check out Asheville Academy for Girls.
Asheville Academy for Girls is a therapeutic boarding school for girls ages 10-14. Call today for more information.