Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is characterized by several symptoms that begin in childhood, including:

  • Problems with attention, concentration and organization
  • Impulsive behaviors
  • Fidgeting
  • Distractibility

Some people will have these symptoms minus hyperactive fidgeting, sometimes called ADD.

There is no single test for ADHD/ADD, a complex condition that is sometimes difficult to diagnose.

Clinicians at Student Health Services offer diagnosis and medication management for some psychiatric conditions. SHS clinicians do not diagnose ADHD/ADD. After careful deliberation and assessment of currently available resources, Student Health Services has decided that we will no longer prescribe stimulant medications for this condition.

Student Health Services remains committed to students who feel they may have symptoms concerning ADHD/ADD. Students with these concerns can schedule an appointment with an SHS clinician to discuss their symptoms. In addition, students arriving at Oregon State University with a current prescription for stimulant medications are encouraged to continue a relationship with their prescribing provider.

Other conditions can cause poor focus and/or distractibility

It is important to know that ADHD/ADD is not the only cause of poor focus and/or distractibility. Other causes might include depression, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, substance misuse, sleep disorders or sleep deprivation.