September 30, 2022
Why an influx of Canadian adults are seeking ADHD diagnosis and treatment, according to experts

Looking back, Pippa Boyd can see the telltale signs – like frequently getting in trouble in grade school for moving around too much, and needing an organizational system that relied heavily on cue cards to make it through nursing school – but only recently has she started to think she has ADHD.

Clinicians and ADHD advocacy organizations say they are seeing a large influx of adults seeking an ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) diagnosis and treatment.

Dr. Gurdeep Parhar says the number of adults coming to his Burnaby, B.C., clinic seeking an ADHD diagnosis is up 25 per cent since the pandemic began. Not all of them will meet the diagnostic criteria, dealing instead with a normal amount of difficulty paying attention, an understandable situation considering all the ways life has changed in the past two years. But with the pandemic’s collapse of routines and schedules – whether it’s no longer going into the office, making it to the gym or attending social functions – many people’s previously undiagnosed ADHD has been brought to the fore, Dr. Parhar says.

“COVID has brought it more to light,” he says. “People who did well in a structured environment, whether it was a classroom or an office, are all of a sudden given all of this unstructured time.”

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