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  • Writer's pictureallison zinnick

Take Charge of Your ADHD Diagnosis!

Intro

When I was diagnosed over 15 years ago (old person groan), there was minimal support, no “community”, and definitely no online diagnosis.

When I talk about #ADHD on Tik Tok, there are loads of people – mostly women – saying that they’re struggling to get an ADHD diagnosis. There are some doctors flat out refusing to give a diagnosis because ‘everyone these days seems to think they have ADHD’. Seriously, because this is just sooooooo fun.

When researching for this blog, I stumbled upon a page called “The DePaula”. It describes itself as “an award winning independent student newspaper of DePaul University.”


Opinion: We need to be wary of online ADHD services

It references an article from the Wall Street Journal, that seems to point to why some medical professionals are reluctant to pursue a diagnosis for their patients.

Dr. Peter Jaksa, founder of ADHD Center Chicago, says people shouldn’t be looking to advertisements, or cute videos on Tik Tok about ADHD symptoms. They should talk to a medical professional.

“Any person with concerns about ADHD should consult with a qualified health care professional who can provide an accurate assessment about whether ADHD is indeed an issue for that person. Dr. Peter Jaksa, founder of ADHD Center Chicago

I will say again that things that ADHD-ers face are things that every human does at some point in their lives. Lots of people are late. Many people can’t keep track of their keys, or finish a project at work. It doesn’t mean you have ADHD. It’s when those things are disrupting your every day functioning that it’s truly a problem. Because I’m a snarky B, I looked to see if the ADHD Center Chicago publishes any ads, but I couldn’t see any.

The Tik Tok ADHD Movement

An article from ADDitude talks about the pros and cons about the #ADHD community on Tik Tok.


TikTok Is My Therapist: The Dangers and Promise of Viral #MentalHealth Videos

It too does note that there is a possible surge in self diagnosis, and that people might confuse content creators with experts. Ultimately though, the pros of sharing about ADHD outweighs the negatives.

“The only danger of information on any platform, is that it is wrong information,” he said. “But that’s the danger for the entire Internet. If you identify with the symptoms of ADHD, it’s up to the professional to screen out the people who don’t have it. It’s not up to the viewer.” Dr. Edward Hallowell

Saying definitively that people shouldn’t be looking for diagnosis elsewhere is bull shit. My friend’s doctor literally said “oh you’ve been watching too much Tik Tok.” Other people have said that they’re on a waitlist months long to see an ADHD professional. We may have “free” healthcare in Canada, but the system is so backlogged. You’re either waiting months for a diagnosis, or you’re paying thousands out of pocket. For some, they’re struggling in silence.

Talk With Frida

So what do you do? What do you do if you’re looking for help and no one seems to want to or have the capacity to? I’ve partnered with a website called Talk With Frida – an online ADHD assessment clinic.

The assessment is free and just takes 2 minutes. If your results point towards a diagnosis, you’ll meet their team for a consultation appointment at a cost of $599. This is a fraction of the costs by private practitioners, which are upwards of $2500 for a formal diagnosis. Talk about predatory practices.

While online clinics are bridging the gap, there are surely those that are too looking to cash in on this influx of people seeking a diagnosis. It’s important to read reviews and feedback from people on their experience. Taking charge of your ADHD diagnosis is great, but do so with caution.

In Closing

The limitations in healthcare systems, such as long waitlists and potential dismissals based on social media influence, can be frustrating.

The reason I share is to help those who are seeking it, but as always, I am not a medical professional, nor am I an expert. Here’s a quick list of ADHD resources:

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