Did you ever wonder whether you might have ADD? Have people joked that you had an attention problem? Every year we discover people who have been trying so hard just to keep their heads above water asking themselves: “I should be able to do this — why am I such a failure?!”

September is ADHD Awareness Month and a major part of awareness is recognition: How do you know if it is ADD or just a momentary lapse? Several factors should be considered:

ADD squirrel

ADD: Distractibility

Have you ever been deep in an interesting conversation with someone you like and lost track of the conversation because something else happened? (Squirrel!)

ADD homework

ADD: Environmental Difficulty

In a self-contained elementary classroom you stayed “with the program,” but upper grades, and college got tough. You just couldn’t keep up. You did your homework, but forget to hand it in. Or lost it. (Shiny!)

ADD steps

ADD: Skipping Steps

You know you’re pretty smart, but can’t seem to prove it to the people who matter. Do you feel like bosses, teachers, and family members can’t understand why you aren’t following established protocols? (ADD?)

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Does any of that sound familiar? If so, it may be helpful to know for sure what you are dealing with: to know once and for all whether you could be enjoying a more productive, less distressing life?

The Test of Variable Attention (TOVA) can provide answers to your questions. TOVA was normalized over the years from a sample of over 10,000 cases. Dr. Lawrence Greenberg continues to modify it and apply it to new cases. With an accuracy rate between 80 and 90%, it is quite likely we can answer questions like, “Do you think I am lazy, a space cadet, or a failure?” with a solid “No!”

Together, we may find that you have ADD and this long-silent condition can finally be addressed.

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Gail G. Johnson, MSW, LMSW, ACSW
“Compassionate Acceptance with Choices for Change”
Gail’s 20 years of experience in mental health have led her to look deeply into the mind-body connection. She has learned that mind and body continually influence one another. Focus on the body’s clues and life’s experience leads to understanding and the opportunity to make healthy choices. Gail has a masters degree in social work, is a member of NASW, and is certified by the Academy of Certified Social Workers. She currently practices at the Fountain Hill Center.
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