What Are Teen ADD Symptoms?


What Are Teen ADD Symptoms?

What Are Teen ADD Symptoms? If you’re unfamiliar with ADHD, you might be wondering whether your teen is exhibiting ADD symptoms. How can you tell the

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What Are Teen ADD Symptoms?

If you’re unfamiliar with ADHD, you might be wondering whether your teen is exhibiting ADD symptoms. How can you tell the difference between your teen experiencing a typical lack of focus and when they are suffering from a potentially damaging condition like ADHD?


This article examines teen ADHD symptoms as well as what ADHD looks like in adults. It describes the two behaviors ADHD patients exhibit and tells you how to spot them in your teens better.

Symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

You can classify symptoms of ADHD as either inattentiveness or hyperactivity. Most ADHD patients fall into both of these categories, but ADHD affects everyone differently.


Children and teens who fall into inattentiveness exhibit the following behaviors:


  • Short attention span
  • Easily distracted
  • Making careless mistakes
  • Forgetfulness or losing things
  • Inability to focus or stick to tasks
  • Inability to listen or carry out instructions
  • Constantly changing activities or tasks
  • Difficulty organizing tasks


Inattentiveness describes patients’ inability to focus, while hyperactivity describes excessive energy.

Hyperactivity and Impulsiveness

The following symptoms are the usual signs of hyperactivity and impulsiveness:


  • Inability to sit still
  • Constant fidgeting
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Excessive movements
  • Inability to wait for one’s turn
  • Impulsive behavior
  • Interrupting conversations
  • No sense of danger


You can see the difference between these two categories, but they can be challenging to classify because of their similarities. People typically fall into both of these categories and experience combinations of these symptoms.


How Does ADHD Affect a Teen’s Life?

Because of the symptoms, ADHD can affect teens’ social lives and school success. Problems getting distracted often lead to academic struggles. Grades can fall, and children and teens can lose focus, especially if they don’t receive treatment.


Teens with ADHD can forget assignments, lose textbooks, and disengage themselves from their coursework. They may also blurt out answers without being called on and interrupt their teachers. ADHD causes teens to lose the ability to focus on one task. This lack of focus can also interfere with their ability to develop relationships with their peers.

How Common are ADHD Symptoms in Teens?

The CDC reports about 9.3% of all children and teens having ADHD symptoms. These statistics show that it is one of the most commonly diagnosed neuro conditions today. Additionally, many teens continue experiencing symptoms into their adolescent years. They can even carry these symptoms into their adult life. ADHD symptoms carry over into these adults’ lives, often hindering their career progression.

Related Conditions In Children and Teenagers With ADHD

Many psychiatric conditions have close ties to ADHD. You should consider the following conditions when examining whether your child has ADHD.

Anxiety Disorder

Anxiety disorder causes your child or teen to worry and obsess over phobias. It can also cause other physical symptoms such as rapid heartbeat, sweating, and dizziness.

Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)

ODD is a relatively new classification for children and teens who frequently display negative behavior towards authority figures such as parents and teachers. Children may act in defiance by actively striking out against authority figures or simply taking the opposite stance than their authority figures.

Conduct Disorder

Conduct disorder typically involves children engaging in antisocial behavior such as stealing, fighting vandalism, and harming others or other animals.



Depression causes children and teens to feel isolated and can have potentially harmful effects such as causing suicidal thoughts or thoughts of harming oneself. Children exhibiting symptoms of depression should see a psychiatrist as the impact can be very detrimental.

Autistic Spectrum Disorder

Autistic spectrum disorder affects social skills and communication style. It can also cause children or teenagers to behave in odd ways and display abnormal behaviors.

Tourette’s Syndrome

Tourette’s syndrome causes children and teens to have paroxysms such as shouting obscenities or making involuntary movements.

ADHD Symptoms In Adults

ADHD symptoms in adults are more difficult to identify. Much of this lack of clarity comes from the lack of research surrounding the condition. However, most researchers believe that ADHD can’t develop in adulthood. It has to originate during the patient’s childhood years.


Thus, ADHD symptoms can persist during the patients’ child and teen years into adulthood and still go undiagnosed as the patient develops ways to cope with their condition. The symptoms associated with adult ADHD are very similar to those present in child and teen ADHD, which is why diagnosing and spotting the condition can be challenging.


  • Lack of attention to detail
  • Starting new tasks before completing others
  • DIsorganization
  • Inability to focus or prioritize
  • Losing or misplacing things
  • General forgetfulness
  • Restlessness and edginess
  • Difficulty staying still
  • Blurting out responses
  • Mood swings
  • Irritability quick temper
  • Inability to deal with stress
  • Extreme impatience
  • Taking risks in activities such as driving dangerously.

Identifying these symptoms as ADHD indicators is difficult because most adults experience some form of them in their adult life. Most people feel impatient from time to time and have a challenging time dealing with stress. However, if you notice an adult exhibits these symptoms in an uncontrollable fashion that affects their life, they should see a doctor.

Conclusion- What Are Teen ADD Symptoms?

Teen ADD symptoms are very similar to those present in children and adults. However, what makes ADD so challenging to diagnose is its large-scale prevalence and somewhat inconspicuous symptoms.

Everyone feels flighty and like it’s difficult to focus from time to time, but when these symptoms start to take over your or your child’s life, it’s time to re-evaluate and consider alternatives.

Residential treatment centers for youth can help teens who struggle with multiple conditions such as ADHD and depression. These treatment facilities give teens the tools they need to cope with their condition healthily and move on with their life the way they see fit.