How ADHD Is Different From Anxiety?


Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and anxiety are two neurological disorders characterized by some overlapping symptoms. Both conditions affect the chemistry of the brain and sometimes mask the signs of another.

However, the success of treatment depends on the identification of a disorder and its association with other diseases. Most of the time, people developed symptoms of anxiety with a persistent state of being inattentive or hyperactive.

So, it’s always better to consult with a psychiatrist to find out an exact disorder and then go for its treatment to expect better results. Here’s how you can differentiate anxiety from ADHD.

Anxiety Vs ADHD

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is a state in which the part of the brain involved in creating a sense of focus and concentration gets affected and remains underdeveloped. It is a hereditary neurodegenerative disease affecting children more than adults.

However, when left untreated without any consultation with a psychiatrist can turn into a continuous state of mental abnormality till adulthood. The most common symptoms include emotional dysregulation, inability to pay attention for a longer time, and uncontrolled behavioral hyperactivity. These symptoms cannot be managed by supplements for anxiety and thus required proper medication prescribed by doctors.

On the other hand, anxiety is an abnormal state of mind characterized by continuous feelings of sadness, restlessness, and uneasiness. The persistent symptoms of being feared, dreaded, and overwhelmed make an individual impulsive over time.

It mainly targets adults who are constantly worrying about their future jobs and unreal situations. The symptoms could be temporary or permanent depending upon the lifestyle and available medication. Although different forms of anxiety medications are available out there, supplements for ADHD can also sometimes ease the state of anxiety.

How Anxiety Is Related To ADHD?

The prolonged state of ADHD can induce the symptoms of anxiety, another neurological disorder. And sometimes, anxiety comes out as an alarming sign of ADHD. In ADHD, the brain is in a state of underdevelopment and has a volume a little less than a healthy brain.

Therefore, the brain cells produce insufficient neurotransmitters such as serotonin and dopamine that are involved in regular mental health and metabolism. This compromised stimulation of neurotransmitters disturbs the normal coordination of the brain with other body cells and gets worsen leading to uncontrollable level of stress, anxiety, and depression.

Not only this, some ADHD medications and supplements work by stimulating or inhibiting different neurotransmitters and corresponding receptors to ease ADHD and while doing that, they can trigger the symptoms of anxiety or stress as a side effect. In this situation, it’s important to find a relation between the symptoms of ADHD and anxiety to treat the root cause of the disorder.

How To Tell Anxiety And ADHD Apart?

Understanding the difference between ADHD and anxiety is a key to telling them apart confidently. Both neurological disorders induce physical as well as psychological changes within an individual.

You can easily differentiate whether an individual has ADHD, anxiety, or a combination of both by considering the nature of the symptoms. Note that, anxiety is a normal emotional response that all healthy individuals experience when triggered, however, its persistent state is a threat.

On the other hand, ADHD is an abnormal condition of the brain in which a patient is unable to manage and control his emotions and appropriate behavioral response.

Physical And Psychological Symptoms Of Anxiety

Patients with anxiety remain in a constant state of being feared, dreaded, and overwhelmed even under normal conditions. They feel uneasiness, restlessness, fatigue, headache, and trembling without any reason. Other physical symptoms associated with anxiety are disturbed digestion, irregular heartbeat and breathing pattern, muscle tension, and cold hands.

Anxiety also triggers psychological symptoms including emotional dysregulation, clinging behavior, social cut-off, fear of gatherings, low self-esteem, irritability, and nightmares. Antianxiety supplements, over the counter anxiety medications, and multivitamin pills are available out there to treat short-term or long-term anxiety.

Physical And Psychological Symptoms Of ADHD

Similar to anxiety, ADHD also causes neurophysiological effects on the body including a lack of interest in the study, compromised focus, inability to concentrate on things, poor memorizing ability, and poor listening skills. People with ADHD are unable to become attentive, get easily distracted, trigger impulsive behaviors, and remain hyperactive inappropriately. The effects of ADHD are more psychological rather than physical and become difficult to treat in adults.

This way, you can find out an association of anxiety with ADHD and their symptoms also to end up taking a recommended treatment.