Can you join the military with ADHD?

Suppose you’ve wondered if you can join the military with ADHD, we’ve got some interesting answers for you.

You see, having a medical diagnosis stopped being the end of the world for years now. Just like the subject at hand, many people diagnosed with ADHD have gone ahead and conquered challenges and moved further on to do great things, such as joining the military.

We know that the rules for joining the military call for a clean bill of health and fitness, which is the more reason why having ADHD can make enlisting in the military a tad more difficult, but not to worry, there is still a silver lining.

With the proper preparation and support, individuals with ADHD can safely and successfully join the military and make a positive impact.

To expand more on the possibility of joining the military with ADHD, keep reading.

What is ADHD?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a type of neuro-developmental disorder. It is characterized by the difficulty for the person involved to concentrate, behave impulsively, and be overly hyperactive.

This medical condition is diagnosed in childhood but mostly persists into adulthood. ADHD in adulthood often becomes more prominent as life becomes more stressful, and the patient experiences severe restlessness, anxiety disorder, and sleep problems.

Attending to duties or work becomes more difficult because this condition affects your ability to face stress and excel above tight situations.

However, getting help from the right place becomes the fastest way to put these symptoms and other added issues in check.

What is the cause of ADHD?

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), according to research, can be genetically transmitted to offspring. Aside from being in the family, the actual cause of this disorder is yet unknown, but there are other factors that may contribute to this diagnosis.

Drug abuse, Alcohol abuse, or smoking while pregnant is a significant cause of this disorder in infants.

Babies born prematurely stand a great risk of developing this disorder.

Babies born with low birth weight are also at risk of having ADHD.

More so, this disorder thrives more in people with learning disabilities, and that does not mean it can not attack those with learning abilities.

Can you join the military with ADHD
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD.

Symptoms of ADHD

Some symptoms will present themselves for adults living with this disorder and help truly identify this health condition. So according to NHS UK, some of these symptoms include:

  1. Fidgeting
  2. Mood swings
  3. Not paying attention to risks
  4. Abysmal organizational skills and prone to missing obvious details
  5. Making avoidable mistakes
  6. Unable to pay attention and concentrate
  7. Being restless and always impatient
  8. Speaking out of context
  9. Jumping tasks
  10. Etc

Meanwhile, ADHD can make room for other mental disorders like 

  1. Obsessive Compulsory Disorder (OCD)
  2. Borderline personality disorder
  3. Depression
  4. Dyspraxia
  5. Anxiety
  6. Bipolar

Is ADHD treatable?

This is still beyond science as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) has no cure yet. The best option remains to manage the disorder with the appropriate measures and lifestyle.

There are appropriate medications if the symptoms become unbearable. Children with this disorder will need exceptional help and lifestyle change with their parents’ help.

How can you Join the military with ADHD?

While applying for the military, ensure you are sincere in your application, especially with your diagnosis.

Being open and honest will help the military know the next best thing to do. Meanwhile, failure to disclose your ADHD diagnosis can lead to severe punishment, like discharge from the military.

Since this is a medical condition that affects the individual’s day-to-day life, many measures will be put in place before the military can enlist as one with this disorder.

Though measures for enlistment vary in the military, the first and most crucial step begins by conducting a thorough evaluation of the person.

This will help to ascertain the extent and severity of the disorder. Information gathered during the assessment will form the foundational decision of acceptance or rejection into the military.

Findings that can mar your military ambition with ADHD

According to some military guidelines, if an applicant has the following after evaluation, it may be rejected.

  1. Been on ADHD medication for the last two years
  2. Has other severe mental disorder
  3. Exhibits forms of dyslexia
  4. Autism
  5. Been on the Individualized Education Program (IEP)
  6. History of work or unfavorable academic activity.
  7. Unable to function correctly in your daily activities.

What to do after medical evaluation

You have to prove that you can function without ADHD medications. This will prove to your recruiter that you can do the work of the military. You may need a psychiatrist assessment to know your mental state if you have not been on the medication.

You must also sit and pass the enlisting exam to demonstrate capability.

The next important thing to obtain is a medical waiver if you must join the military with ADHD.

How can you secure a medical waiver to join the military with ADHD?

Medical waivers are issued to applicants who are not medically fit but wish to join the military. Before you receive the waiver, you need to follow the guidelines for this. Though it may be hectic and long, medical waivers for ADHD are possible.

Furthermore, applicants must find out what works in the military branch they applied for, and all branches have specific rules for this document. Generally, the applicant must fill out some forms honestly while in the recruiter’s office to explain their answers to the recruiter.

Applicants with ADHD will go through a screening for further verification and have a medical expert review the results. The next step is to take the military qualification test known as the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test, followed up with a medical exam.

The results of these tests will decide if the applicant will receive a congratulatory message or a NO from the military.

So, ADHD can be a barrier but not a permanent stop to your dreams of joining the military. All it takes is to stay off the meds and still function effectively. If you can, every other thing can easily fall in line with time.

A final thought on Can you join the military with ADHD

Our answer to this question is yes, persons with ADHD can join the military and thoroughly enjoy their time throughout their stay. This medical condition and many other diagnoses stopped deciding the fate of those living with it.

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