My ADHD Brain

Scans to measure blood flow and activity in the brain suggest that when you focus on a task, the part of your brain responsible for focus – the prefrontal cortex increases its level of blood flow in that region of the brain.

For someone with ADHD, when one focuses on a task, the prefrontal cortex reacts in the opposite way, decreasing blood flow to this region of the brain. Perhaps, this explains the deficit in attention, or lack of focus that one with ADHD will experience.

I have recently been given a diagnosis of ADHD by a psychiatrist.

It’s something I have suspected for many years now, however this particular type of ADHD is difficult to diagnose, and a lot of people go their whole lives with an undiagnosed mental condition that they suffer for.

A common mistake is to confuse an inattentive type of ADHD with other conditions like major depressive disorder and bipolar disorder.

There are various types of ADHD, and the most well known one is the stereotype of the hyperactive child with behavioural issues. These people with ADHD get a diagnosis during early years of life. However, there are other forms where some people go a whole lifetime without a proper diagnosis. This can cause a lot of issues in career, relationships and health – life in general.

This more subtle type of ADHD often goes unnoticed because these people don’t display the stereotypical symptoms. This other type is usually referred to as inattentive ADHD, and often involves a lot of day dreaming, lack of focus and issues with mood.

We are now learning that there are up to 7 different types of ADHD today. Taking both psychological and physiological aspects into account, scans from Amen Clinics in the US suggest 7 different types of ADHD based off blood flow and activity in the brain. Certain types of ADHD brains showed overactivity in the limbic system of the brain – the control centre for our emotions, which was associated with a depressive/mood type of ADHD. Other scans revealed overactivity in the cortex, which was associated with an anxious type of ADHD.

Although an ADHD brain can usually cause a lot of problems for ones life, there are also many advantages. ADHD brains are usually very creative, and this may have to do with the amount of time one with ADHD can spend day dreaming.