The following is a summary of the “Stress and work-related mental illness among working adults with ADHD: a qualitative study” published in the November 2022 issue of Psychiatry by Oscarsson et al.

Few studies have examined the experience of working as an adult with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder(ADHD), despite the fact that many adults with ADHD underachieve professionally, are more stressed, and have more days of sickness absence than those without ADHD. The effects of ADHD on the workplace, such as increased stress and the development of mental health problems, are examined in this study. About 20 ADHD individuals in the workforce participated in semi-structured phone interviews. 

Participants were asked about their experiences with and reactions to their ADHD diagnosis and/or symptoms on the job, as well as their feelings about the impact of their jobs on their mental health and the need for appropriate accommodations. In addition, complete interview transcripts were analyzed using qualitative content analysis. Through this process, researchers were able to identify 3 overarching themes (Working with ADHD, Needs, and Special Abilities) and 8 underlying categories (challenges) that describe some of the difficulties of working with ADHD. 

Specific challenges; Relationships and cooperation; Negative consequences; Planning, prioritization, organization, and structure; Support, interventions, accommodations, and aids; Openness, understanding, and acceptance; Strategies; Strengths and qualities. When it comes to accommodations and assistance, much of the responsibility falls on the employee’s shoulders when working with ADHD, and disclosing a diagnosis can come with a lot of pressure.