How does driving become manageable wi... - CHADD's Adult ADH...

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How does driving become manageable with ADHD?


One of my biggest tasks right now is wanting to be able to drive. It's so embarrassing not being able to drive anywhere I want to, because there are so many places I want to be/do but can't. With my ADHD it makes it difficult for me to focus studying just to I can get the ability to drive. Plus I'm also afraid of the consequence of not being able to pull it off and I feel a bit overshadowed that I can't. As a lot of problems I have would help a lot if I could. What exact is the kind of treatment I need or the type of help I need in order to focus better or manage enough to study for the test? How exactly do one's with ADHD manage to fare in comparison?

9 Replies

Is your adhd being treated with medication right now? This is actually a really common problem with driving issues and adhd. I’m glad you’re aware of your limitations and want to take extra precautions to make sure you’re safe. If you don’t mind me asking, how old are you?

Codebox42 in reply to Halem1982

Well I do have medication, but it doesn't really help with any sort of concentration or focus. It just sorta helps the mood swings and not getting angry as easily. I'm not exactly sure what kind of medication I would need or how I could be aware of the results working. As of Tuesday though I now am seeing a Therapist. What would you suggest for that?

And I've stated numerous times on previous posts that I'm 24 years old. But yeah I'm completely aware of my condition now, maybe even to aware. And it scares me honestly.

Halem1982 in reply to Codebox42

I wish I knew what you’re starting to understand when I was 24. I promise, you are ahead of the curve and you’ll be better off for it in the long run. I completely understand about the mood issue. My dr tells me I have a low frustration tolerance....and it’s 100% true. Lol. What do you take for that?

Halem1982 in reply to Codebox42

I’m sorry to ask again but I’m really curious what you take for mood regulation and it if works? Right now I’m on Vyvanse and Nuvigil for adhd and clonazapam for anxiety. Something is still off with my meds. I’m not as productive as I used to be and it’s depressing. I sleep a lot and I don’t even care what I look like anymore, which isn’t normal for me. I used to at least spend time to be presentable in public but lately I just roll out of bed, brush my teeth, and throw on whatever is in plain sight without me having to put any effort in. Maybe I just need to get used to this being the way I am now and not give myself such a hard time about it but it still feels abnormal. I just don’t understand why I got so lazy all of the sudden and to be honest, I don’t really like it and I don’t want to be ok with it.

Back to your issue, medication isn’t a 100% fix for everything but I believe it could be extremely beneficial for driving. Before I was medicated for adhd I caused a 5 car pile up on a freeway. Luckily no one was hurt because the accident looked really bad just by looking at the cars. I had no idea I had adhd at that time. After that accident I didn’t have any major ones but I did get tickets all the time. At one point I had 17 warrants for my arrest for traffic violations. Lol

Since I started taking vyvanse from the age of 26, I’ve only been in one minor accident. I was looking at my gps and barely rear ended a truck that had a trailer hitch on the back of it. The truck didn’t have a scratch on it but the hitch messed up my front end pretty bad even though I hardly tapped it. I’ve never even been pulled over for a traffic violation in the car I have now, which I bought in 2012, and my registration sticker has been expired since 2013 so I have no idea how I haven’t been stopped for that. My point is that my driving record appears to have gotten so much better after I started taking vyvanse. I don’t know if there’s any correlation but it’s hard for me to believe there isn’t.

I was on similar medications. I had to ditch the anti-anxiety med. I was on alprazolam and later clonazepam for a couple years for anxiety and now, having been off them for quite a while, I swear the benzodiazepines made me plain old stupid. I did see it at the time but retrospectively it's clear. I'll never take another benzo again.

Maybe changing your meds and getting rid of the clonazepam would be helpful?

Just a thought.

Are you planning to take a drivers ed coarse or simply study for the permit test on your own? I feel like it would be a lot easier if you could take the coarse.

I took the coarse and got my permit first try. It was a year and a half before I went for my license though. That one took me three tries, mostly because I was really nervous the first two.

I don’t think it’s too big of a deal if you don’t get it right away. Just practice/study some more and try again! You’ll get there eventually, and it is a big relief when you do.

The drivers I fear the most on the road probably do not have ADHD. There are so many drivers on the road who are always in a rush and dangerous. So, maybe I am a square for having ADHD. I remember every rule of the road I learned when I was 16. I rarely speed unless everyone else is driving insanely fast and honking at me. The most important reason to drive is safety. Safety is the real reason, not getting to a place as fast as possible. Now, it is really hard to be "slow" with so many impatient drivers. Have to teach myself patience with them. Not getting unnerved. Not getting frustrated. Not driving so slow that I am a hazardd on the road, because that can be just as bad as speeding. But it is still okay to go just under the speed limit to maintain safety. If one is needing to focus and concentrate, better to go slow and not be the least bit bothered when some drivers are impatient. If they zip by you, I think "Bye. At least, You are out of my hair".

Being aware that your ADHD handicaps you a little in driving is important. Those of us with ADHD have to work harder at staying safe then other people. I’m speaking as someone who just had an accident this past weekend. I can see that I need to be pretty paranoid about every time I get behind the wheel.

I’m a little ignorant when it comes to this struggle I feel like I’m more alert on the road. How does it effect you guys?

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