What is Complex ADHD?

This week we are talking about what we mean when we say “complex ADHD.”  It’s easy to understand, even for us sleep-deprived parents.  Simple ADHD is when your child has ADHD but not another related diagnosis.  Complex ADHD is when your child has ADHD and another related diagnosis.  Here at “Two Moms and ADHD,” we call that ADHD+.

Approximately 6 of 10 kids diagnosed with ADHD will also have a diagnosis of one or more of the following:

  • learning disabilities
  • language disorders
  • anxiety
  • depression
  • autism
  • sleep disorders
  • Tourette’s and tic disorders

When your child has Complex ADHD or ADHD+, that means they have ADHD and one or more of the above conditions.  This can complicate getting a clear and complete diagnosis.  It can prolong finding a med regimen that works.  It can make your child feel like a mystery to you for a long while because they don’t fit neatly in a category.  

What we’ve learned on our journeys raising ADHD+ers is this handful of simple truths: Remember that you know your child best, even when things feel unclear.  Listen to your heart as you consider answers.  But most of all, listen to your child.  Make sure they feel heard, loved, accepted and cherished.  Building a strong bond with your child should always be the priority – it will be what serves as their springboard for life.

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