The unfortunate truth is that no one tells ADHD patients what to expect when meds wear off. Moreover, drug ads on television or online only mention medication benefits but rarely on how to focus with ADHD with the after effect.

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Mainly, ADHD medication wears off after about 3-4 hours. In the process, victims switch between states of hyper-focused productivity and undesirable performance.

Other than that, patients struggle with activities that require serious attention, like reading a book or watching television.

Join us as we define how to maintain focus with ADHD.

What Are the Three Types of ADHD?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common mental disorders. Often, it occurs in about 4% – 6% of school-aged children.

There are three subtypes of ADHD:

1. Combined Type ADHD

In this type, an individual meets the criteria for both Inattentive and Hyperactive-Impulsive types.

2. Predominately Inattentive Type ADHD

This subtype is when an individual exhibits more inattention symptoms than hyperactivity-impulsivity symptoms.

3. Predominately Hyperactive-Impulsive

Here an individual exhibits more hyperactive-impulsive symptoms than inattention symptoms.

For diagnosing ADHD in adults, experts use a scheme that categorizes symptoms as either Neurodevelopment Disorder or Conduct Disorder with onset before twelve years of age.

Symptoms not fitting either category are classified under:

  • Other Specified Disorder
  • Unspecified Disorder

In general, children with a combined type of ADHD rarely have problems with recklessness or aggression.

Children with the predominantly inattentive type experience:

  • Difficulties with poor organizational skills
  • Procrastination
  • Time management

On the other hand, children with the hyperactive-impulsive type are usually more aggressive and impulsive than those of different types.

how to focus with ADHD

Types of ADHD

How Does a Person With ADHD Think?

Given that an ADHD patient brain is chemically imbalanced, it’s hard to say how these individuals think.

Experts believe the problem lies in a deficiency of dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter and a powerful feel-good neurochemical that generates feelings of pleasure.

Dopamine regulates:

It’s also the drug of choice for people with ADHD — not because they’re self-medicating but because their brains are genetically programmed that way. Most likely, ADHD medication helps individuals think clearly and increase productivity.

Why Is It Hard to Focus With ADHD?

Generally, ADHD patients struggle with hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention.

Unfortunately, these symptoms make it nearly impossible for patients to focus on any activity. If you are troubled about focusing on ADHD, there are various types of prescription medications available.

The main problem is that some ADHD medication reduces focus while also increasing agitation.

For this reason, activities requiring close attention or over-stimulation seem to cancel out any positive effects from the drug.

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Below are imperative tips to boost your focus during the off-time period.

1. Schedule Some 10-Minute Movement Session

You don’t need to spend hours at the gym, but at least ten minutes of physical activity can help both your heart and mind stay focused and active. If possible, try to get a small amount of exercise early in the day.

Remember that you can achieve much by also taking a short walk, jog, bike ride, or other cardiovascular activity. [1*] The beauty of it all is that it helps stimulate nerve chemicals in your brain.

When that happens, you tend to feel more alert and focus for hours afterward.

2. Use a Timer

Instead of fidgeting from one task to another, it is prudent to focus on one thing at a time. Start by creating lists of things needed to be accomplished within a specific time limit.

Then concentrate on prioritizing them and avoid multitasking. If need be, socialize with other similar minds and learn how to break down your tasks in manageable chunks.

3. Learn to Meditate

Training about proper breathing and acquiring one-pointed concentration leads to better focus. In addition, meditation is a great way to eliminate distractions and increase the ability of your mind to focus on one thing at a time.

How to Focus With ADHD

How to Manage ADHD Medications Rebound

4. Get Enough sleep

Try to get the best perfect sleep you can. If you are not sleeping well, then your meds won’t be effective for the next day.

5. Eat a Healthy Diet

Avoid foods high in sugar and low in nutrients such as:

  • Soda
  • Sweets
  • Fast food
  • Processed snacks
  • Fried foods

Stick to whole grains, fruit, and vegetables with small amounts of lean protein and plenty of water throughout the day.

6. Don’t Beat Yourself

It is okay not always to be able to maintain your focus and concentration with ADHD.

Most importantly, it is necessary not to stress yourself out too much over it is. Instead, accepting the situation and addressing issues in a positive way is part of making ADHD less stressful.

7. Cut Out Distractions

Whether you are studying or working on office tasks, it is important to eliminate TV and cell phones around you. This is because it is almost impossible to focus in a loud or busy place.

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Bottom Line

It is essential to take steps to improve your ADHD condition.

You can achieve this by:

  • Taking ADHD medication
  • Doing physical exercise
  • Learning how to manage your time with visual reminders better

Also, anticipate future obstacles by finding out what technique works for you. In the meantime, consult verified therapists at EZCare Clinic for optimal diagnosis and treatment on ADHD-related conditions.


+1 sources
  1. American Heart Association Recommendations for Physical Activity in Adults and Kids. (2023)
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Evidence Based

This article is based on scientific evidence, written by experts and fact checked by experts.

Our team of experts strive to be objective, unbiased, honest and to present both sides of the argument.

This article contains scientific references. The numbers
in the parentheses (1, 2, 3) are clickable links to peer-reviewed scientific papers.