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Question #1103062569Tuesday, 14-Dec-2004
Category: ADD/ADHD Theory
Is there any connection between the so-called disease of ADHD and certain socionic types? -- Anonymous
Your Answers: 1+ 14+ 28+
A1 Attention Deficit (Hyperactivity) Disorder or AD(H)D is believed to be caused by a chemical imbalance of a class of neurotransmitters called catecholamines. This is a neurological condition not a psychological. Any person can successfully accommodate AD(H)D, despite their type. This condition received its name because AD(H)D person would have difficulty to concentrate or sustain attention because of the lack of some neurotransmitters. Attention as such is not a psychological function and is not related to one and therefore has no relevancy to the type. From our own experience with AD(H)D people, it is fair to say that these people most likely had a deficit of attention from parents or others in childhood, which quite possibly indirectly resulted in misbalance in levels of some neurotransmitters. The ADD with Hyperactivity is more or less proves this point, as the hyperactive behaviour is aimed to attract much attention, hence the name "Attention Deficit". -- Admin
A2 According to some people, there is, and I recall a table on some website that clearly showed correlation between ADD/ADHD and ENFP/ENTP, but I can't find it anymore. But the following pages do shed a light: I'm almost 40 now, but when I was a 2/3 year old (back in 1968/69) I was sent to a special medical daycare center because I was a very 'busy child' (in those days, the terms ADD and ADHD didn't exist) and exhausting my parents. Nowadays, daycare centers are pretty common, but back in the late sixties they weren't, at least not in The Netherlands, so that I was sent there, was a very special thing. When I reached the age of 4, I could go to regular kindergarten, and release my energy there. In the end, I turned out OK, although people are often amazed at my energy levels and the rate at which I accomplished things. -- Pieter
A3 Is it possible that the start of the disorder caused the personality type to develop. I've known a few ISTP's with dyslexia. My brother is ISTP and has ADHD. There was a site somewhere that said ISTP's have trouble learning in a regular classroom. "it is fair to say that these people most likely had a deficit of attention from parents or others in childhood, which quite possibly indirectly resulted in misbalance in levels of some neurotransmitters."-I agree with this, but this caused the personality type to develop. Look at the hidden agendas. I believe most if not all types can be linked to some "disorder". Do you try linking this to cognitive styles? ENTP "Teacher" seems to have ADHD(Kramer from Seinfeld)(The scientist from Back to the Future)... -- Curious
A4 I don't think the last words have been spoken on this issue, but I thinks ADHD/ADD and ENTp/ENFP personality have no causal relationship. It's just the behavioral symptoms that seems to be similar, and this might actually lead to misdiagnosis. -- pm
A5 I would think percievers would be burdened by this problem more. -- Tracy
A6 ADHD is still a somewhat contriversial diagnosis. I was diagnosed when I was in college, struggling to complete tasks and dealing with severe depression from being understimulated. Admittedly, medication (30mg of Adderall XR each day) and therapy has helped me cope. However, I personally don't believe that ADHD is so much a disorder as a personality type issue. I have little empirical data to back this up, only my own experience. My understanding is that ADHD is simply a low sensitivity to stimuli, resulting in hyperactivity and impulsive attention-switching in order to maintain a comfortable stimlation level. This sounds awfully close to the description of NP types, especially extroverts. Most NPs get very agitated when there's nothing new going on and are severly bothered by others' dependence on order and familiarity. ADHD is probably nothing more than the negative reaction of strong NPs to strongly SJ school systems and work environments. Unfortunately NPs are a minority type, and can therefore not expect to change to world, so we are diagnosed and treated so that we can accomodate. -- JReed
A7 It would have been too easy if ADD/ADHD was only affecting NP types. I know at least 2 people, one is ISFp and one is ESTj that suffer from mild form of ADD. If, as you said yourself, it is the lack of stimuli, then any type could be the victim. -- Dr. Zoidberg
A8 I'm quite sure that there are ADHD people of other personality types. I didn't mean to imply that all ADHD people are NPs, but rather that all NPs could probably be diagnosed as ADHD. Whether they actually have the disorder (and to what extent ADHD exists as an objective syndrome) is up real psychologists. But the common traits of all NP types are in some ways very similar to many of the symptoms of ADHD. -- JReed
A9 Answer A8, you raise an interesting point, back in the mid-1980s before anyone heard of ADD I had a friend whose father is a doctor and they stuck him on some kind of drug, probably Ritalin, for his condition. I believe that he is an ENTp. But, I had problems paying attention in school and I am an INTj (fortunately no one drugged me up). Males are probably more prone to ADD due to various genetic and social factors, so I would guess type is just one of the pieces of the puzzle. -- econdude
A10 I have ADHD and I'm an ISTj. I'm 37 and was diagnosed when I was 5 or 6. I was on Ritalin as a child, went off it when I reached High School and started taking it again about 3 years ago. To be perfectly honest, I don't think ADHD has any influence on your personality type. Sure I'm hyperactive, but I'm still introverted. Not sure if any of this helps, but that's my 2 cents. -- BillM
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A11 I'm not arguing that there is any concrete "connection" between the types and disorders. I'm arguing more about the (mis)diagnosis of external intuitive types as ADHD (ENTp, ENFp, INTp, INFp). Since the rapid connections made by these individuals are so visible, and often result in disruptive behavior, schools and other formalized institutions will recognize these things as a problem very quickly. The only reason I wasn't diagnosed as a kid was because I was able to find a school with more stimulating curricula. I understand what you're saying, BillM. I don't doubt that you have ADHD because of your personality type. -- Anonymous
A12 I know an ADHD INTj *shrug* He is currently "testing" prescription drugs from his doctor because he really wants to finish college, but has major issues sitting down and studying. -- Jadae
A13 Honestly, I think ADHD has very little to do with personality type. As someone who actually has ADHD and takes medication, I've never once felt like the disorder defines some fundamental aspect of my personality. When I don't take my medication, I don't suddenly become a different person; I just have more trouble concentrating and paying attention. ADHD isn't a personality type, it's just a disorder that makes it harder to notice stop signs when your driving. It doesn't make you bubbly and imaginative, it just makes it harder for you to focus when doing tedious things. It's one thing to find homework boring and pointless (and therefore not worth doing), that has more to do with personality. As a kid with ADHD, you can love homework more than you love chocolate ice cream, but it still won't make it any easier to sit down and do it. You sit there and try to read a book, and you just cannot pay attention. You don't daydream or go off on some mental tangent because of what you're reading, you just don't absorb any of it. You stare at the page and read the lines, but none of it sticks. You don't know if it's boring or not, because you can't even get far enough in to understood what the book is about. Your mind just tunes the whole thing out and you find yourself sitting there thinking of absolutely nothing at all. You can try to force yourself, but it's almost like trying to force yourself to fall asleep. The more you think about it the harder it is to actually do. Eventually though sheer willpower and determination you may be able to get through an assignment, but it requires an extraordinary amount of time and effort, and the results are almost always mediocre at best. And it's pretty much the same for any task that requires you to focus. When you have ADHD, those things aren't boring; they're hard! Excruciatingly hard. It feels like lifting a fifty pound weight up ten flights of stairs. You just can't do it without taking a break. Everyone knows that feeling, the one you get when you've been working or studying for hours on end and just can't do it anymore. It's mental exhaustion, plain and simple. No matter what your personality, there comes a point when you just get tired, and for people with ADHD that point comes a lot sooner than it does for others. When you have it you can tell, and so can the people who know you well enough. Even if you want to keep working past that point of exhaustion, you can't do it. It's as if your brain just doesn't have the energy. Still, none of that has anything to do with your personality, just like having asthma has nothing to do with how tall you are. And using that same analogy, taking ADHD medication changes your personality just as much as taking an inhaler makes you shrink. Yes, there may be some correlation between personality type and ADHD, but that doesn't mean that everyone with a certain personality type has ADHD, or that everyone with ADHD has a certain personality type. That being said, it's also quite likely that many people get misdiagnosed because of their personalities, parents, doctors or whatever, but that doesn't mean ADHD itself is completely nonexistent. In any case, many people seem to overestimate what effects the disorder can actually have. Yes, it can be extremely debilitating, but it doesn't extend to every fiber of your being and define who you are as an individual. -- Patrick
*Please note that the opinions expressed are not necessarily those of*
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