ADHD in Teens

Things to know about ADHD and teens

Parents want to help their teens become more independent and make decisions for themselves. That’s why it’s important to understand how teens may experience the symptoms of ADHD.

ADHD symptoms may appear differently as your teen gets older.

ADHD during teenage years

  • While ADHD is usually identified in childhood, it’s estimated that 60% to 85% of children with ADHD may continue to have ADHD as teens.
  • During the teen years, the way ADHD symptoms look may change. Hyperactivity (e.g., running or climbing) may become less obvious. Instead, teens may experience fidgetiness or an inner feeling of jitteriness, restlessness, or impatience. They may also continue to struggle with impulsivity.

As your teen matures

  • Some ADHD symptoms may become more subtle and less noticeable.
  • Symptoms of hyperactivity such as excessive running and climbing may be less obvious.
  • Teens with ADHD may fidget with their hands and feet, feel restless, and may have difficulty engaging in quiet activities.
  • Teens with ADHD may also have trouble staying organized, be easily distracted, and have trouble keeping up.

If you think your teen may have ADHD

Make an appointment for you and your teen to see your teen’s doctor. Only a doctor or other trained health care professional can accurately diagnose ADHD.

Fill out an ADHD Symptom Checklist and talk to your teen’s doctor.

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It’s nobody’s fault.

– Nancy L.

Parent of a child with ADHD

Going to see your teen’s doctor?

Get an ADHD Doctor Discussion Guide.   

What do other
parents do?

Learn from parents
of teens with ADHD.