A study published in journal Pediatrics March 4, 2013 showed that ADHD diagnosed in childhood often persists into adulthood, and often brings with it various other negative conditions, such as subtance abuse, bi-polar disorder, major depression, anti-social personality disorder, and anxiety disorders. The lead investigator, William Barbaresi is now at Harvard and Boston’s Children’s Hospital, but he began the study when he was at the Mayo Clinic.
A very important piece of research, this landmark study shows how critical it is to diagnose ADHD as early as possible, and to follow the person who has it well into adulthood. To prevent the severe ravages of untreated ADHD, including an increased risk of incarceration and even suicide, it is imperative that parents join with doctors and teachers in an organized effort to diagnose and then treat and follow indefinitely all who have this potentially devastating condition.
However, as I’ve stressed in my books and lectures, the outcomes can be excellent, as long as the person with ADHD receives the correct interventions. Indeed, adults with ADHD can and do achieve at the highest levels of success one can imagine. Some are Pulitzer Prize winners, others multi-millionaires and CEO’s, others brain surgeons or award-winning scientists, others renowned trial attorneys or legislators, others inventors, or pofessional athletes, or gifted teachers, or major contributors to society at every level.
There is no condition in medicine that can be as disabling as ADHD, and yet with proper treatment be associated with greater success.
The Barbaresi study proves how devastating ADHD can be and how important it is to recognize its chronicity. But, if we do that, if we provide proper treatment, then the terrible outcomes can be avoided, and a spectacular life unfold.