The Student Room Group

I think I might have ADHD - What do I do?

It’s a bit ironic me needing help as a Life and Style Helper, but never mind…

Hey guys, I need help. For about a year or 2, i’ve been thinking that I have ADHD but when I spoke to my parents they just said “no you don’t” and basically shut down any discussion. My teacher said to me today that she thinks I might have ADHD and I asked other people what they think and every one said that it’s most likely that I do. I’m 17 which means I do have medical autonomy, but I want to get this all over with before my A-Levels but anything via the NHS can take ages. I also can’t afford to go private… what can I do???

EDIT: Would it be wrong to ask the teacher who mentioned it to email my parents to see if they will do anything if it comes from someone official?
(edited 3 months ago)
Reply 1
I am not 100% sure if this is the case in England but in the part of the UK where I live, schools can directly refer to CAMHS for things like ADHD and ASD assessments. So I would speak to you teacher in the first instance to see if that is something they may be able to do.

If your school is not able to refer to CAMHS, you would need to speak to your GP and say that a teacher has raised this concern and ask them to refer instead. Be aware that an ADHD assessment will require getting information from your parents or other evidence of symptoms early on in your life so if your parents will not be willing to engage, you might want to look for things like old school reports that might add evidence.

I would prepare for a very long wait though, this is not something that will be sorted in a couple of months. Appreciate this is not ideal, but the other option may be to wait until you are at uni and see if your uni may be able to refer for an assessment (I have seen people mention this but I have no idea how this route works).
Original post by taylor2317
It’s a bit ironic me needing help as a Life and Style Helper, but never mind…
Hey guys, I need help. For about a year or 2, i’ve been thinking that I have ADHD but when I spoke to my parents they just said “no you don’t” and basically shut down any discussion. My teacher said to me today that she thinks I might have ADHD and I asked other people what they think and every one said that it’s most likely that I do. I’m 17 which means I do have medical autonomy, but I want to get this all over with before my A-Levels but anything via the NHS can take ages. I also can’t afford to go private… what can I do???
EDIT: Would it be wrong to ask the teacher who mentioned it to email my parents to see if they will do anything if it comes from someone official?

It sounds like you're in a challenging situation, but there are steps you can take to address your concerns about ADHD. Here's a suggested approach:
Research: Educate yourself about ADHD symptoms and how they may be affecting you. Understanding the condition better can help you articulate your concerns more effectively.
Talk to Your Parents Again: Try having another conversation with your parents about your concerns. Approach the conversation calmly and share your reasons for thinking you may have ADHD. Be prepared to provide examples of how ADHD symptoms impact your daily life.
Consult with Your School: Since your teacher has expressed concern, you could consider discussing your situation with a school counselor or another trusted staff member. They may be able to offer support or guidance on how to approach your parents or seek help.
Seek Medical Advice: While NHS referrals can take time, it's still worth contacting your GP to discuss your concerns. They can provide guidance on the best course of action, which may include a referral to a specialist for assessment.
Explore Other Resources: Look for local support groups or charities that may offer assistance to individuals seeking ADHD diagnosis and treatment. They may provide resources or guidance on navigating the healthcare system.
Consider School Support: If you receive an ADHD diagnosis, your school may offer accommodations or support services to help you manage your condition during your A-Levels.
Regarding your edit, asking your teacher to email your parents could be a reasonable approach if you believe it would help facilitate a productive conversation. However, it's important to consider your relationship with your parents and how they might react to such an email. Make sure you're comfortable with the idea and that it aligns with your goals for addressing your concerns about ADHD.
Remember, seeking help for your mental health is important, and you deserve support in addressing your concerns. Don't hesitate to reach out to trusted individuals or resources for assistance.
Original post by black tea
I am not 100% sure if this is the case in England but in the part of the UK where I live, schools can directly refer to CAMHS for things like ADHD and ASD assessments. So I would speak to you teacher in the first instance to see if that is something they may be able to do.
If your school is not able to refer to CAMHS, you would need to speak to your GP and say that a teacher has raised this concern and ask them to refer instead. Be aware that an ADHD assessment will require getting information from your parents or other evidence of symptoms early on in your life so if your parents will not be willing to engage, you might want to look for things like old school reports that might add evidence.
I would prepare for a very long wait though, this is not something that will be sorted in a couple of months. Appreciate this is not ideal, but the other option may be to wait until you are at uni and see if your uni may be able to refer for an assessment (I have seen people mention this but I have no idea how this route works).

Original post by Hunter Ibarra
It sounds like you're in a challenging situation, but there are steps you can take to address your concerns about ADHD. Here's a suggested approach:
Research: Educate yourself about ADHD symptoms and how they may be affecting you. Understanding the condition better can help you articulate your concerns more effectively.
Talk to Your Parents Again: Try having another conversation with your parents about your concerns. Approach the conversation calmly and share your reasons for thinking you may have ADHD. Be prepared to provide examples of how ADHD symptoms impact your daily life.
Consult with Your School: Since your teacher has expressed concern, you could consider discussing your situation with a school counselor or another trusted staff member. They may be able to offer support or guidance on how to approach your parents or seek help.
Seek Medical Advice: While NHS referrals can take time, it's still worth contacting your GP to discuss your concerns. They can provide guidance on the best course of action, which may include a referral to a specialist for assessment.
Explore Other Resources: Look for local support groups or charities that may offer assistance to individuals seeking ADHD diagnosis and treatment. They may provide resources or guidance on navigating the healthcare system.
Consider School Support: If you receive an ADHD diagnosis, your school may offer accommodations or support services to help you manage your condition during your A-Levels.
Regarding your edit, asking your teacher to email your parents could be a reasonable approach if you believe it would help facilitate a productive conversation. However, it's important to consider your relationship with your parents and how they might react to such an email. Make sure you're comfortable with the idea and that it aligns with your goals for addressing your concerns about ADHD.
Remember, seeking help for your mental health is important, and you deserve support in addressing your concerns. Don't hesitate to reach out to trusted individuals or resources for assistance.


UPDATE: I spoke to my school today and they essentially said that they can't do anything because they aren't qualified medical professionals and by them doing anything it would be seen as giving me a diagnosis....
Original post by black tea
I am not 100% sure if this is the case in England but in the part of the UK where I live, schools can directly refer to CAMHS for things like ADHD and ASD assessments. So I would speak to you teacher in the first instance to see if that is something they may be able to do.
If your school is not able to refer to CAMHS, you would need to speak to your GP and say that a teacher has raised this concern and ask them to refer instead. Be aware that an ADHD assessment will require getting information from your parents or other evidence of symptoms early on in your life so if your parents will not be willing to engage, you might want to look for things like old school reports that might add evidence.
I would prepare for a very long wait though, this is not something that will be sorted in a couple of months. Appreciate this is not ideal, but the other option may be to wait until you are at uni and see if your uni may be able to refer for an assessment (I have seen people mention this but I have no idea how this route works).

There’s more hope of hell freezing over than a school referring anyone to CAMHS
Reply 5
Original post by Little pecker
There’s more hope of hell freezing over than a school referring anyone to CAMHS

It happens in Scotland. I don't know how things work elsewhere in the UK
Reply 6
Can you ask your GP to refer you for an assessment?

There will be a wait but you can get on the waiting list.
If you are able to wait until you are 18, you can ask your GP to refer you via the Right to Choose pathway for an ADHD assessment I hope that helps.
Original post by taylor2317
UPDATE: I spoke to my school today and they essentially said that they can't do anything because they aren't qualified medical professionals and by them doing anything it would be seen as giving me a diagnosis....

well of course not! you will need to ask them for people to go to within your community!
You can ask the doctor from age 16 and above to refer you for an assessment without contacting parents
However the assessment process normally requires someone who has known you since childhood. I don't see a reason why the teacher that mentioned it to you couldn't inform your parents.
Also maybe try finding out if they are against ADHD or just don't think you have it as if its the second case then you could ask them if they go along with the assessment and if you don't then they were right sort of thing but then you might still have a chance of being diagnosed
Also just something to keep in mind in my area its a 5 year wait for an assessment but sometimes unis have private assessments but you could go on the NHS waiting list so it's over sooner
Let me know if you have any more questions, I don't have ADHD but did the autism assessment around the same age as you and they are normally joint assessments
Hope it goes well
Reply 10
Original post by Cote1
Can you ask your GP to refer you for an assessment?
There will be a wait but you can get on the waiting list.

This is pretty much the only way to go now. You can get a private assessment, but ££££s.
ADHD UK is a useful website.
Reply 11
Can you book an appointment with a counselor or a psychologist by yourself?
Can your school refer you to one?
Original post by Kathy89
Can you book an appointment with a counselor or a psychologist by yourself?
Can your school refer you to one?

School won’t refer bc they “can’t diagnose” especially not at the request of a student
Reply 13
Original post by taylor2317
School won’t refer bc they “can’t diagnose” especially not at the request of a student

Exactly why referral is needed... If you can't diagnose send to a one who can...

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