Can Untreated ADHD Cause Depression and Anxiety?

Have you ever felt like your mind is constantly racing, struggling to stay focused on one thing for too long? Do you find it difficult to manage your time or complete tasks? If so, you may be familiar with the challenges of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). But did you know that untreated ADHD can potentially lead to depression and anxiety?

Imagine this scenario: You’re in school or at work, trying to concentrate on the task at hand, but your thoughts keep drifting. You struggle to follow instructions, and you constantly feel overwhelmed by the simplest of tasks. Over time, these difficulties can take a toll on your mental health.

Challenges of Untreated ADHD

Untreated ADHD can create a cascade of challenges that impact various aspects of your life. The inability to focus and complete tasks can lead to academic or occupational problems, strained relationships, and low self-esteem. These struggles can, in turn, contribute to feelings of frustration, hopelessness, and isolation.

Stress & Anxiety

As you navigate through life with untreated ADHD, you may find yourself experiencing increasing levels of stress and anxiety. The constant pressure to keep up with others, coupled with the fear of failure, can exacerbate existing feelings of worry and apprehension. Additionally, the impulsivity often associated with ADHD can lead to impulsive decision-making and risky behaviors, further fueling anxiety.


Moreover, the chronic nature of ADHD can make it challenging to maintain a consistent routine or stick to long-term goals. This lack of structure and stability can contribute to feelings of uncertainty and disarray, amplifying the risk of developing depression.

Depression and anxiety often go hand in hand with ADHD, forming a complex web of interconnected symptoms. While each condition is unique, they can reinforce and exacerbate one another, creating a cycle of distress that feels overwhelming to break free from.

How To Treat ADHD

Recognizing the link between untreated ADHD, depression, and anxiety is the first step toward seeking help and finding relief. There are a number of ways to address ADHD symptoms so you can better manage your challenges and reduce the risk of developing secondary mental health conditions.


Therapy, particularly cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), can help you develop coping strategies to manage symptoms of ADHD, depression, and anxiety. 


Medications such as stimulants or non-stimulants may also be prescribed to address specific symptoms and improve overall functioning. 

Lifestyle Changes

Lifestyle modifications, such as regular exercise, adequate sleep, and stress management techniques, can complement treatment and promote well-being.

Get the Help You Need For ADHD

Remember, you’re not alone in this journey. Seeking support from friends, family, or mental health professionals can provide the encouragement and guidance you need to navigate the complexities of ADHD and its associated challenges. Together, you can develop a personalized treatment plan that empowers you to thrive despite the obstacles you face.

ADHD Therapy in California

If you’ve been struggling with untreated ADHD and noticing symptoms of depression or anxiety, don’t hesitate to reach out for help. Your mental health matters, and with the right support and resources, you can overcome the challenges that lie ahead and lead a fulfilling life. If you are in the Bay Area in California and would like to talk to a psychologist who specializes in therapy for ADHD, please contact me to book a virtual appointment. 

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