ADHD Therapist Philadelphia
Overcome distractions, boost focus, and embrace your strengths with ADHD Therapy at The Therapy Gal—your trusted partner for personalized healing and growth.
Is your brain setting prioritization traps?
Many of us that struggle with ADHD are all too familiar with the feelings of disappointment associated with our productivity. We want to concentrate but we find ourselves constantly getting distracted by thoughts like, “I should text my friend back right now so I don’t forget” or “Oh, I forgot to unload the dishwasher. I’ll do that really quickly and then get back to my work”.
The thing is, our brains are to blame. Our brains play this mean trick and get us to believe there’s some other thing that’s more important than the task we should be doing. This is called a prioritization trap and ultimately leads us on a path to further distractions like social media.
Ever wonder how you ended up scrolling Tiktok for 30 minutes when you should have been finishing a project at work?
Let’s take a look with an example of what a day working from home might look like for a person with ADHD…
ADHD and working from home
It’s 9 am and you’re ready to get started on that super important assignment your boss Sharon gave you the day before. Sharon made sure to emphasize that it NEEDS to be done by the end of the day.
You put your phone on silent, throw some white noise on your headphones, and open up the assignment. You’re only a few minutes in when you think to yourself, “I forgot to brush my teeth! There’s no way I can concentrate on this until I brush my teeth”.
So now you’re brushing your teeth while watching a recap of last night’s episode of the bachelor on instagram. But that’s fine, you’ll finish brushing your teeth and start working on your assignment in no time!
The problem is, you walk back into your office and see your dog laying in the cutest way possible!
“I obviously have to give my dog some cuddles! My work will still be there after a quick 5 minute cuddle session!”
Once again you find yourself scrolling through instagram only this time it’s cuddled up next to your puppy. Just like Rome, all roads lead back to instagram.
This cycle of trying to work but getting distracted goes on all day. Before you know it, it’s 5 o’clock and you have 3 missed calls from Sharon wondering where that assignment is…
If this sounds like you…
You might be one of the 6.4 million people diagnosed with ADHD or Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder according to the data from the CDC. ADHD affects kids, teens and adults in different ways, and it’s important to understand how it might be affecting you. So let’s talk a little bit about ADHD…
The truth behind ADHD and the brain
ADHD is a multifaceted, neurodevelopmental disorder that is quite complex because it involves a combination of neurological, genetic, and environmental factors. Studies have shown that those diagnosed with ADHD may have differences in the size and activity in the certain regions of the brain that include our ability to maintain attention, impulse control, and executive functions. Due to these differences, our neurotransmitters, such as dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin (which regulate attention, motivation and mood) are often affected in the way they function.
Research also suggests that ADHD may be linked to alterations in our immune system and gut microbiome, which is something we don’t often think about!
ADHD Diagnosis Age and Gender
ADHD symptoms vary depending on factors like age and gender. In adults, ADHD diagnoses are on a one to one ratio for males and females, whereas with children, boys are diagnosed with ADHD three times as much as girls. This is because as we get older, our symptoms show up more similarly than when we were children.
Typically, younger girls tend to show inattentive symptoms, present more internally, and appear less disruptive. Younger Boys, on the other hand, are more likely to show impulsive hyperactive symptoms, present more externally, and exhibit more disruptive behaviors, that are therefore, more noticeable.
How do I know if I have ADHD?
Misdiagnosing happens more often than we think, and it’s important to look at the various components of the diagnosis before fully understanding how to treat it. A useful way in understanding whether or not you might have ADHD is by looking at your family tree as ADHD has a genetic component to it. If someone in the family struggles with ADHD, it would be more likely to find another family member struggling in a similar way.
ADHD can also come about in ways that are not genetic, but rather environmental, such as undergoing trauma, long term drug-use, and stress.
The most important thing to remember here is that even if you have ADHD, this does not make you any less capable than anybody else. Many high-achieving, hard-working, creative individuals have ADHD, and lead very enriching and successful lives. This is due to the ability to focus on things that interest them, and becoming proficient and knowledgeable in those areas.
Hyperfixation: The ADHD advantage
Did you know that having ADHD does not necessarily mean that you always struggle with staying focused? Many individuals with ADHD experience hyperfixation, which is characterized by intense, prolonged periods of focus over a particular interest or activity.
Meaning, you might have struggled while studying math, but had no issues with playing video games or gardening. This explains that even though you struggled paying attention in class, you were able to focus on the activity you loved doing the most. ADHD might present challenges in attention and impulse control, but many high performers with ADHD identify hyperfixation as a bit of a super power when it comes to focusing on things they love!
Is ADHD impacting your health? An ADHD therapist can help!
When we experience symptoms of ADHD, it’s our body’s physical way of telling us we might be overstimulated. These symptoms can feel distracting and difficult to manage.
Physical symptoms of ADHD may show up differently in everyone. Here are some of the most common physical symptoms of ADHD:
- Restlessness: feeling unable to sit still or stay in one place for long periods of time, often as a result of anxiety or hyperarousal.
- Fidgeting: engaging in constant, small movements, such as tapping one’s foot or playing with objects, as a result of restlessness or nervousness.
- Difficulty concentrating: experiencing challenges with maintaining focus and attention on tasks or activities, often as a result of distractibility or hyperactivity.
- Excessive physical activity: engaging in high levels of physical movement or activity, often as a result of restlessness or hyperactivity.
- Excessive talking: engaging in frequent or prolonged speech, often talking quickly and without pauses, which can be a result of hyperactivity or nervousness.
- Impulsivity: acting quickly and without considering the consequences, often as a result of restlessness or impulsivity.
- Interrupting others: frequently interrupting conversations or other activities, often as a result of restlessness or difficulty with impulse control.
What does ADHD do to our brains?
ADHD not only affects our physical health but also our cognitive abilities. Studies have pointed out that individuals with ADHD have a smaller prefrontal cortex and basal ganglia, as well as a decreased volume of the posterior inferior vermis of the cerebellum- all of which play important roles in focus and attention.
The cognitive symptoms of ADHD can be subtle, but they can have a significant impact on our daily lives. Here are some of the most common cognitive symptoms of anxiety:
- Carelessness and lack of attention: making mistakes or oversights due to a lack of attention to detail, which can result from restlessness or distractibility.
- Difficulty completing tasks: having difficulty finishing tasks before starting new ones, which can result from restlessness or difficulty with organization.
- Poor organizational skills: experiencing challenges with organizing tasks or materials, which can result in difficulty completing tasks and staying on track.
- Difficulty with focus and priorities: experiencing challenges with maintaining focus on tasks and determining which tasks are most important or urgent.
- Forgetfulness: experiencing challenges with remembering information or events, which can result from restlessness or difficulty with attention and memory.
- Restlessness and edginess: feeling anxious or on edge, which can result from restlessness or hyperactivity.
ADHD and Emotions
ADHD can also take hold of our emotional state. Individuals with ADHD often experience emotions so deeply that they become overwhelmed or flooded with the emotion. Your highs may be higher, but your lows may be lower if you struggle with ADHD.
The symptoms of ADHD might also make you feel embarrassed around others or even lead to social anxiety. Here are some common emotional symptoms of ADHD:
- Easily flustered and stressed: experiencing stress or anxiety in response to relatively minor events or situations, which can result in feeling overwhelmed or flustered.
- Irritability and anger outbursts: feeling easily frustrated or angered, and responding with explosive or intense outbursts, which can be a result of stress or anxiety.
- Low self-esteem and insecurity: feeling inadequate or insecure about oneself, which can result in a sense of underachievement or lack of confidence.
- Hypersensitivity to criticism: being highly reactive to criticism, even if it is constructive, and feeling upset or defensive in response, which can result from low self-esteem or a fear of rejection.
Find an ADHD Therapist in Philadelphia, PA, NJ, or Online
If you made it all the way here, congrats! I struggle with ADHD too so I realize how tough it can be to read a paragraph let alone a whole article. Luckily, there are ways to combat our ADHD.
Studies have shown that improving time management and organizational skills, medication, and developing better problem-solving skills has been proven to help adults with ADHD.
ADHD Therapy is a great way to get to the root of your struggles. Utilizing ADHD treatments like CBT, or Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, will help you create specific skills to manage your behavior and change negative thinking patterns into positive ones. Once you have gotten comfortable forming mental reframes, your ADHD therapist will help you learn how to reduce impulsive behavior, cope with academic or work stressors, improve your self-esteem and learn ways to improve relationships with your family, co-workers, friends and romantic partners.
During your sessions at The Therapy Gal, we will work with you to uncover how ADHD has been affecting you, what your strengths are, and what your goals are moving forward. Once these goals have been put into place, your ADHD specialist will develop a step-by-step plan to help you better understand and ultimately overcome your symptoms.
The ADHD specialists at The Therapy Gal are here to help!
Through talk therapy, your ADHD therapist at The Therapy Gal will provide a supportive and nonjudgmental place where you can find solutions to your problems.
Our ADHD specialists realize that you’re more than just an individual, but rather as human-being affected by a collection of experiences that have made you who you are today. Because of this, our first session will be tailored to understanding you more deeply. Moving forward, your ADHD specialist will address the ways you feel ADHD has been impacting your life, and support you through various strategies to help strengthen your resources and coping skills.
One thing to note about therapy is it often brings our deeply rooted traumas to the surface. The ADHD therapists at The Therapy Gal realize this can be difficult and will always work with you at a pace that makes you feel safe and comfortable. Creating a roadmap for your ADHD diagnosis is something we’re very passionate about, and bringing you that sense of relief and confidence is our ultimate goal.
Your life doesn’t need to be so challenging anymore! From your daily tasks to uncomfortable social interactions, ADHD treatment at The Therapy Gal can help make all of it feel more bearable. We will give you the tools to enhance your overall functioning, and provide you with a unique and tailored approach to meet you where you’re at.
Frequently Asked Questions about Therapy for ADHD
How do I deal with an ADHD shame spiral?
Shame is the hardest thing to deal with since it tends to be hidden and never addressed. This is more common than you think. Perhaps you’ve struggled with this for years and you’ve encountered repeated ‘failures’ that were met with disappointments. Maybe you’ve adopted ADHD as a part of your identity, and it’s scary to let it go or see what else it could be like. Don’t be afraid to ask for help! It doesn’t need to be this way! ADHD is not your identity! It might be a part of you currently, but it is not the whole of you. You deserve to be free from it, and it doesn’t have to be anybody else’s business. What you say in the therapy room, stays in the therapy room.
I want to manage my ADHD without medication
This is a personal preference that we will always respect and understand. While medication can be extremely helpful in treating ADHD, an ADHD therapist can help you with holistic strategies to remedy the symptoms. We will always be on your side, and tailor the ADHD treatment to reflect your needs.
I am worried about the cost of my therapy for ADHD
This is a valid concern, and one that you might want to weigh the pros and cons of. Therapy is an investment in ourselves, it’s a choice we make to help ourselves through hardships. If you’re struggling at work or school, this might financially impact you more in the long-run, than a period of sessions directed towards healing your ADHD symptoms.
How important is therapy for ADHD, and what kinds of therapy are most effective?
Therapy is very important in treating ADHD! The most common therapeutic modality used for ADHD is CBT, Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. CBT can help you develop coping skills and problem solving strategies to manage your symptoms. Your therapist may also work on social skills training to help with improving relationships. If ADHD is affecting the family unit, we also recommend family therapy, which can help improve communication within the family and reduce stress.
How long does it take for adhd treatment to work and when can I expect to see improvements in my symptoms?
The answer to this question will look differently for everyone. ADHD treatment is typically more long-term as it may involve a combination of medication, therapy and lifestyle changes. However, you might see improvements in only a few weeks. Again, it depends how much work is put into treatment, and what you work on outside of the session.
How can I manage my ADHD symptoms in my daily life, even when I’m not actively receiving treatment?
Towards the end of treatment, your therapist will have worked with you on figuring out ways for you to cope with your ADHD. You would be able to manage and structure your routine better, break tasks into smaller more manageable steps, and find ways to engage in relaxation techniques. The goal is for you to utilize these methods outside of the therapy room and grow confidence around doing so on your own.
Are there any ADHD lifestyle changes that I can make to help with my symptoms?
Much like many things, ADHD loves having a structured routine. Your therapist will help you come up with a routine that fits your lifestyle, work with you on improving your sleeping habits, learn stress-management techniques, and find ways to limit distractions. It’s important to mention that lifestyle changes alone may not be enough for managing all of your ADHD symptoms, and that a combination of other therapeutic approaches may be necessary for some!
Do you have ADHD therapists in Philadelphia?
Yes! Our office is located in center city at 255 S 17th St, Philadelphia, PA 19103.
Do you have ADHD therapists in NJ?
Yes! We have ADHD therapists in New Jersey that can see you online.
Do you offer online therapy for ADHD?
Yes! We offer online ADHD therapy as long as you live in PA, CO, or NJ.