Multitasking

There are opposing opinions about whether people with ADHD are better or worse at multitasking.


Some believe that, because ADHD brains are constantly moving from one thing to the next, it gives them the natural ability to work on multiple things at once. However, there is no evidence to back up these claims, and in fact, people with ADHD might actually be worse at multitasking.


Attention is an example of an executive function. We're teaching our brains what to pay attention to and what to ignore.


Multitasking, however, is also an example of executive functioning. In reality, directing our brains what to do while paying attention to numerous things at once is a difficult task!


Furthermore, research shows that concentrating on many tasks requires the same cognitive skills as concentrating on a single task. So it stands to reason that if someone with ADHD struggles with the latter, they will also suffer with the former.


Even studies which showed no impairment to multitasking abilities at the very least showed that it took much more effort for a person with ADHD to multitask and as such had an effect on their mood and they also less motivation.

Sources

  1. Petersen N. Are People With ADHD Worse at Multitasking? Psych Central. Published June 21, 2017. Accessed January 27, 2022. https://psychcentral.com/blog/adhd-millennial/2017/06/are-people-with-adhd-worse-at-multitasking#1

  2. Gawrilow C, Merkt J, Goossens–Merkt H, Bodenburg S, Wendt M. Multitasking in adults with ADHD. ADHD Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorders. 2011;3(3):253-264. doi:10.1007/s12402-011-0056-0 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/21461781/