Face It — People with ADHD Are Wired Differently

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder. This means there are differences in the ADHD brain that affect a child’s development. ADHD does not influence intelligence. It does, however, affect a person’s ability to regulate attention and emotions, and it results in hyperactivity and impulsivity as well as organization problems.

“Take a deep breath and press the following buttons on your activity thermostat” makes sense if the wiring is standard, but not if the wires are connected differently, as they are in children and adults with ADHD. The most current research on brain imaging is starting to let us trace the wiring, so we can untangle the misconceptions that experts, as well as those with ADHD, have about the disorder and the brain. Our new understanding of the brain promises to change the way we treat ADHD.

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that contributes to essential skills such as motivation and decision-making. In children with ADHD, some dopamine pathways are thought to be disrupted, leading to lower levels of dopamine. This could cause some of the typical characteristics associated with the disorder.

Biology Of Adhd Brain

The ADHD vs. Non-ADHD Brain

What is ADHD? An Overview of the Causes and Signs of ADHD | Verdugo ...

Researchers at Cambridge, England, and Oulu, Finland, followed 49 adolescents diagnosed with ADHD at age 16 and examined their brain structure and memory function in young adulthood (between 20 to 24 years old), compared to a control group of 34 young adults. The results showed that the group diagnosed in adolescence had reduced brain volume as adults, leading to poorer memory function, even if they no longer met the diagnostic checklist criteria for ADHD. Researchers saw reduced gray matter in a region deep within the brain known as the caudate nucleus, the brain region that integrates information across different parts of the brain and supports cognitive functions, including memory.

May be interested:

The Brain Up Close

Alex wasn’t asking Dr. Mason to quote studies, just to help him reach some of his goals. Dr. Mason was about to say “50-50,” to emphasize that the effects of medication and non-medication therapies are both important, but what came out was, “They’re both essential. It’s 100-100. Neither of them matters much without the other.”

Serving as our control center, the brain needs to both send and receive electrical signals or “messages” throughout the body. The brain is able to do this via nerve cells (neurons). However, there are gaps between neurons. Neurotransmitters are the chemical messengers that fill the gap and allow for messages to be passed along.

Face It — People with ADHD Are Wired Differently

Many of the characteristics of ADHD are related to executive functioning. This refers to a set of mental skills that include working memory, emotional control, and complex problem-solving. Essentially, executive functions are the skills we all use to manage day-to-day tasks, such as time management, staying organized, and planning. While there are several different parts of the brain that contribute to executive functioning, the prefrontal cortex is especially important in regulating these skills.

On a hot summer day in my new office, my client and I were shivering cold. “The air conditioning is hyperactive, maybe?” I jokingly wondered as we pulled on sweaters. I turned the thermostat up to 76 degrees, then 80, but the cold air wouldn’t stop.

Another interesting finding was that the amygdala and hippocampus are smaller in the brains of people with ADHD. These areas are responsible for emotional processing and impulsivity and had previously not been definitively connected to ADHD. 

How Is the ADHD Brain Different

ADHD and Your Brain The Neurobiology of ADHD

One study published in 2010 found that children with ADHD do not have the same connections between the frontal cortex of the brain and the visual processing area.   This suggests that the ADHD brain processes information differently than a non-ADHD brain.

May be interested:

Brain Structure

MoMo Productions / DigitalVision / Getty Images

“Our HVAC system seems overactive,” I explained later to my husband. “Could it be too big for the office space?”

How Is ADHD Tested and Diagnosed?

ADHD Brain vs Normal Brain: Functions, Differences & More

Aron Janssen, MD is board certified in child, adolescent, and adult psychiatry and is the vice chair of child and adolescent psychiatry Northwestern University.

May be interested:

Differences in the ADHD Brain

What this means is ADHD is not a difference in behavioral preference. Instead, ADHD appears to be partially attributed to a difference in how the brain is structured. What may look like behavioral choices — laziness, sloppiness, and forgetfulness — are likely due to differences in brain structure.

Ever since it was first diagnosed in the 1960s, ADHD (attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder) has been a controversial topic. Even experts often debate over how the disorder should be defined and what causes it.

Video for “What does an adhd brain look like?”

More pictures for “What does an adhd brain look like?”

The Neuroscience of the ADHD Brain

Differences In Brain Structure For Children With A.D.H.D

Large-Scale MRI Study Confirms ADHD Brain Differences | PowerBrain RX

Comparison of Normal Brain to ADHD Brain (Barua et al, 2022) | Download ...

Inside the adult ADHD brain | MIT News | Massachusetts Institute of ...

ADHD: Pathophysiology and Pharmacological Treatment : FADQ

Adhd and the_brain

Pin on ADD

Treatment for ADHD

How Does An Adhd Brain Work

MRI technique may help prevent ADHD misdiagnosis | MUSC Health ...

The Brain on ADHD | WebMD

An ADHD look at ADHD : r/Infographics

Brain Balance of Austin: An Inside Look at ADHD

BPD and ADHD: What You Should Know

ADHD Brain Vs. Normal Brain: Differences Explained

What is ADHD ? Learn about ADHD diagnosis | BrainTrainUK

ADD / ADHD | Amen Clinics

Adult ADHD: The Brain!!

Brain signal reappears after ADHD symptoms fade

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder | Aging Matters Magazine

Your Brain on ADHD | Holiner Group

ADHD Brain: Unraveling Secrets of Your ADD Nervous System

ADHD Tools: Attention and Brain Hacks

ADD ADHD Aspergers Syndrome Integrative Medicine Healing NutriMeds and ...

ADHD And Brain Structure: The Disorder Affects Teens' Memories Later In ...

Pin on ADD

Compare normal vs ADHD brain

From Childhood to Adulthood: Trajectory of ADHD Brain

ADHD & the Brain

What is Adult ADHD? — Millennium Medical Associates — Adult ADHD ...

ADHD, Dyslexia treatment methods

Pin on ADHD/Autism

ADHD Brain Study Finds Slower Development of Key Connections ...

How Is ADHD Tested and Diagnosed?


Rate article