View Full Version : ADHD Incidence in middle aged Australians


Kunga Dorji
10-23-14, 08:52 PM
http://www.plosone.org/article/info%3Adoi%2F10.1371%2Fjournal.pone.0031500


Abstract

Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is the most prevalent childhood psychiatric condition. It frequently persists into adulthood and can have serious health and other adverse consequences. The majority of previous adult ADHD studies have focused on young adults so that relatively little is known about ADHD symptoms and their effects in mid and late life. In addition, effects of subclinical levels of attention deficit and hyperactivity have not been studied in detail. In this study we investigated ADHD symptoms and related impairment in a large population-based sample of middle-aged Australian adults (n = 2091; 47% male). Applying the WHO adult ADHD Self Report Screener (ASRS) we observed that 6.2% of participants had scores that were previously associated with ADHD diagnosis. No significant gender difference in the distribution of ASRS scores was observed. Multiple regression analyses indicated strong positive correlations between symptoms of ADHD and depression/anxiety and significant negative associations (p<0.01) with employment, financial stress, relationship quality, health and well-being measures in this age group. Importantly, associations were highly significant even when few ADHD symptoms were reported. Compared to the hyperactivity component, the inattention trait was particularly strongly associated and remained significant after controlling for depression/anxiety symptoms. Our study confirms previous findings and significantly adds to existing literature especially for an age-group that has not been well-studied. Our results suggest that ADHD symptoms continue to be associated with ill-health and functional impairment in mid-life and are, therefore, likely to be a major, previously unrecognized source of late-life morbidity with associated social and economic costs. Thus, there is a compelling need for better understanding and development of age-appropriate approaches to the diagnosis and treatment of ADHD in mid- to late-life.




It puts the rate of diagnosable ADHD in middle aged Australian adults at 6.2%

Given figures from Prof Alisdair Vance at the Children's Hospital that only 5% of ADHD individuals fully resolve their condition this would suggest that there are about another 3% of that population who are sitting just below diagnostic threshold.
My experience with ADHD adults would suggest that these individuals are simply "in remission" and that all they need is another crisis to push them back into active ADHD symptomatology.


The rate of diagnosis in adults in Australia is, of course much lower than that.


Equally the evidence linking untreated ADHD to really poor life outcomes (psychiatric comorbidity, suicide, accidents, poor occupational and financial outcomes, social isolation, marital failure, drug abuse and greatly increased risk of criminal offending) has been clear since at least the 2002 International Consensus statement on ADHD.



Given the low rate of diagnosis it is clear that the prevailing culture of skepticism about ADHD, and the failure to diagnose, represents a major failing of our health education systems, and nothing less than institutionally approved negligence.

I have long argued that it is time a clean sweep was made of most of the major academic appointments within the psychiatry departments of most Australian medical schools- and this is about all the evidence needed to support that argument.

I find it particularly disturbing that organisations like"Beyond Blue" and "The Black Dog Institute" completely fail to mention ADHD in their online material. They are supposed to be up to date with the science.

HADDaball
10-24-14, 02:08 AM
I agree Kunga.

Wouldn't surprise me if most ADD kids struggle with it most of their lives.

Maurice
10-27-14, 05:35 PM
Equally the evidence linking untreated ADHD to really poor life outcomes (psychiatric comorbidity, suicide, accidents, poor occupational and financial outcomes, social isolation, marital failure, drug abuse and greatly increased risk of criminal offending) has been clear since at least the 2002 International Consensus statement on ADHD.



Given the low rate of diagnosis it is clear that the prevailing culture of skepticism about ADHD, and the failure to diagnose, represents a major failing of our health education systems, and nothing less than institutionally approved negligence.

I can tell you from first hand experience and from being undiagnosed and untreated most of my life that the statements above are totally true!

SB_UK
10-28-14, 03:49 AM
Equally the evidence linking untreated ADHD to really poor life outcomes (psychiatric comorbidity, suicide, accidents, poor occupational and financial outcomes, social isolation, marital failure, drug abuse and greatly increased risk of criminal offending) has been clear since at least the 2002 International Consensus statement on ADHD.



Given the low rate of diagnosis it is clear that the prevailing culture of skepticism about ADHD, and the failure to diagnose, represents a major failing of our health education systems, and nothing less than institutionally approved negligence.

I can tell you from first hand experience and from being undiagnosed and untreated most of my life that the statements above are totally true!

Definitely true.

The thing though is that all of the above only arises because we're trying to place a regular shape into an irregular shaped hole.
There's nothing wrong with ADDers.
Simply - we feel pain when we're forced (by society) to do things which bring no reward.

All that's required is for us to be left alone.

But how will anything progress if we're left alone / freed from compulsion ?
Well everything that people do in this world is NOT for the best for the species.

And as soon as we're left alone / freed from compulsion - we'll be able to choose to associate with others which'll allow us to drive reward from what we do - and if we find there's none ... ... to move on.

Reward systems are that important - fly in the face of what brings you reward and you won't (nobody can) feel motivated.

From which the procrastination, stress, anxiety, depression, low achievement, psychological problems, drug addiction, self-medication, medication seeking activities begin.

It's all simply trying to do things that you don't want to do, worse still - forcing yourself to do things that you actively do not want to do.

SB_UK
10-28-14, 04:01 AM
ADDers are customised for a voluntaryist society and not for a capitalist society because money doesn't float our boat.

Very simply - if it did - then we'd all be hard working little wage slaves, slaving and cheating every minute of our lives to get on and make more money.

But we can't - because there's little (maybe nothing) that is inspirational to the ADDer in the current educational and work place.

Make things better not turn the handle on a conveyor belt which generates people with just so many certificates unable to do anything useful (derive social reward/feel reward from doing something for other people/make the world a better place).

Just kill everything, pollute everything, destroy nature, hurt people, eat it all yourself
- why on earth would anybody find anything rewarding in thicko world ?

SB_UK
10-28-14, 04:05 AM
In conclusion

LIVE FREE OR DIE

Which translates to - live a life freed from the compulsion of money/law or spend one's life dying to the diseases of chronic stress (distress) which have been termed the diseases of Western living.

These kick in from birth and are with us, evolving and recruiting other dieseases until our premature death from a life of pain.

Kunga Dorji
10-28-14, 06:34 AM
A point I have made elsewhere when asked what the standard tests were for ADHD in adults in Australia:
he standard approach to ADHD in adults in Australia is to MISS THE DIAGNOSIS. !!!

This is called institutionally approved stupidity.

Pilgrim
10-28-14, 07:18 AM
A point I have made elsewhere when asked what the standard tests were for ADHD in adults in Australia:
he standard approach to ADHD in adults in Australia is to MISS THE DIAGNOSIS. !!!

This is called institutionally approved stupidity.

It doesn't surprise me. My mothers family was rife with ADD. A couple of over- doses and a few trips to the big house there. Add to that all the relationship issues.

RobboW
10-29-14, 07:30 AM
I have a friend here who lives a life of troubles with his partner, trouble getting regular work, impulsive etc etc, I mentioned my likelihood of being ADD the other night. I strongly suspected he was too, turns out he was diagnosed and medicated as a child, doesn't have meds now. He has a quick and ingenious mechanical mind, but oddly is not into tech stuff at all.

someothertime
10-29-14, 07:37 AM
so right you are.... i've seen the comment / experience..... that in a study environment this is less of an impairment....... :scratch:

thankyou for sharing this relevant info Kunga.

it's almost t-shirt time ;)

Maurice
10-29-14, 08:35 PM
A point I have made elsewhere when asked what the standard tests were for ADHD in adults in Australia:
he standard approach to ADHD in adults in Australia is to MISS THE DIAGNOSIS. !!!

This is called institutionally approved stupidity.

I don't think Australia has a patent on the standard approach to ADHD in adults, the United States is the same way, or at least wait until they are 50 years of age before you do give the correct diagnoses.

Kunga Dorji
10-30-14, 08:55 AM
so right you are.... i've seen the comment / experience..... that in a study environment this is less of an impairment....... :scratch:

thankyou for sharing this relevant info Kunga.

it's almost t-shirt time ;)

Yep- I can think of a good one
"Any doctor who cannot recognise and treat ADHD should retire".

but it needs to be punchier than that.

Kunga Dorji
10-30-14, 08:58 AM
I don't think Australia has a patent on the standard approach to ADHD in adults, the United States is the same way, or at least wait until they are 50 years of age before you do give the correct diagnoses.

No- it is better in the US- maybe not great- but not bad.

I have been thinking our ADHD support groups in Australia should write a letter to every psychiatrist in Australia with this information included and ask them if they have ever treated or diagnosed any cases, and if not, can they justify their failure?

someothertime
10-30-14, 10:53 AM
how about;

"beyond new"
accepting diverse humans doc?
( fear = falsehood, evidence = clarity, which side are you on? )

:D

SB_UK
10-30-14, 03:25 PM
Yep- I can think of a good one
"Any doctor who cannot recognise and treat ADHD should retire".

but it needs to be punchier than that.

--- WANTED ---
ADHD Diagnoses
55 reward (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/11177632/Anger-over-cash-for-diagnoses-dementia-plan.html) per scalp

... ... watch out though folks - they're quick

-*-

People with colds diagnosed with ADHD, people with a sore foot - obviously ADHD and as for all those twenty something females with a bulge where their belly should be ... ... well that'd be ADHD.
All with Alzheimers' also obviously.

daveddd
10-31-14, 01:13 PM
Kd

Didn't want to start a new thread but I have a question

You know I've seem to have loss or repressed most of my mental content. My mind is dead

So that makes it hard to reach an observing state

I was getting close after a couple hours yesterday

Any time imagery would start to form I would get a jolt. To the point of twisting my head

Then it's all gone and I have to start over


Any ideas

daveddd
10-31-14, 01:54 PM
A chronic dorsal vagal shutdown?

Kunga Dorji
11-01-14, 11:58 PM
A chronic dorsal vagal shutdown?

I think you are on the right track- the sort of phenomenon you are talking about suggests some unresolved trauma/ repressed memory- and the mechanism is a vagal shutdown.

This is well understood in trauma therapy- but the challenge is getting past the block without reactivating the trauma.

I had a big breakthrough in this regard last weekend- but I had to go a very roundabout route to achieve it.