Why does it take a long time to get an ADHD diagnosis ?

Why does it take a long time to get an ADHD diagnosis ?

For years and years, many people have suspected having ADHD but struggled to get a proper diagnosis. It is known all over that getting officially diagnosed with ADHD is a long process that could take up to years. Due to this, many ADHDers feel frustrated, lost and in some cases can even give up on getting diagnosed.

Many medical conditions can mirror ADHD symptoms. Some of these conditions are anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder, sensory processing disorder, disruptive behavior disorder… Because of this, settling on a correct diagnosis gets very tricky, even for experts. So, seeing more than one doctor might be an option to consider.

Although ADHD is one of the most diagnosed behavioral disorders especially in children, it still remains poorly understood. It is often associated with procrastination, carelessness, laziness and many more aspects that could cause one to feel down and attract negative comments and blame.

Luckily, some countries are better at dealing with these kinds of disorders than others. In other words, lack of access to healthcare can affect whether people get the treatment that they need. This is also related to the high medical costs of this kind of healthcare, which not everyone can afford. An older study shows average medical costs related to ADHD ranged between 4929$ AND 5651$ ( Matza LS, Paramore C, Prasad M ‘’A review of the economic burden of ADHD’’). 

Overall, getting an official ADHD diagnosis is a long procedure that contains numerous steps. If you’re looking to get a diagnosis, expect to have long hours of conversation with your clinician, be ready to answer a lot of questions and undergo a lot of tests. Also, keep in mind that a diagnosis can provide a lot of clarity and orientation, so no matter how long it takes, it’s definitely worth it.