I find it particularly embarrassing how little we have investigated this area

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Creativity appears at or near the top of every list of ADHD “superpowers”. Does research support the association between ADHD and creativity? How can we measure creativity? And what do we even mean by creativity, anyway?

Psychologists usually define creativity as the generation of ideas that are both original and useful. In this framing, creativity involves not just novelty or having ideas that are different from others, but one must also produce something functional. A list of random words might be a rare and unusual assortment but does not signify creativity until combined into a poem or story or collage.

Can a recalled governor replace himself?

Photo by Tiffany Tertipes on Unsplash

In less than two months Californians will vote on recalling Governor Gavin Newsom. While a majority of Californians support allowing the governor to remain in office, the individuals pushing for his removal appear to be more motivated to cast ballots. A number of factors (the short campaign duration, an unusual September 14th election date, and no other issues on the ballot) could all foster a low turnout, and yield a surprise victory for the recall zealots.

If Newsom is recalled, whichever candidate wins a plurality of voters on the second ballot question becomes the next governor. …

Can We Cure ADHD By Going Outside?

Anna’s Hummingbird Nest by JSKruse

Record numbers of Americans are inundating our national parks as the country begins opening up after a lengthy COVID shutdown. Clearly, lots of people want to commune with nature — even with large crowds and long lines. But does nature really provide the healing benefits that so many new age gurus tout?

Several years ago I chaperoned a class of third-graders on a class trip to a city park. …

An intrinsic part of these muscle movements is social communication

Image by Lenka Fortelna from Pixabay

My brow furrowed and the corners of my mouth drooped as I read Emilia’s article about asking people not to tell her to smile. The words resonated. My mind connected to the thoughts, and my face recorded my emotional response. People had frequently told me to smile. Teachers, relatives, strangers on the street, would all deliver this directive.

Emilia’s words captured many of the thoughts and feelings that would bombard me at those moments: that my face was none of their business; that they were being patronizing, intrusive, or triggering; that I didn’t want to present the world with a…

Americans deserve knowledge about the mental health of their presidents

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay

Ronny Jackson (R-Texas) and a dozen other Republican Representatives recently demanded that President Biden undergo cognitive testing and publicize the results. Although cloaked with a pretense of concern, the intent of their request appears to be political trolling, as evidenced by the hilarious dictate that Biden “should follow the precedent set by former President Trump to document and demonstrate sound mental abilities”. Many would maintain that Biden has already surpassed that standard by encouraging mask wearing during an epidemic spread by respiratory aerosols.

Despite the political gimmickry involved, Jackson’s letter raises a valid issue. We screen and exclude the most…

A Glimpse at the Glymphatic System Shows Why

Image by Petra Šolajová from Pixabay

Only in the last decade have researchers uncovered how the brain collects and expels trash: the glymphatic system. The initial glimpse of the glymphatic system revealed that it flushes cellular debris and waste from the brain primarily during sleep. More recently, research on mice indicates that our twenty-four-hour biological clocks also help determine when to engage the glymphatic system. Our newfound knowledge about how the glymphatic system works emphatically reinforces the importance of not just obtaining enough hours of sleep but sleeping at consistent times, as well.

Before delving into the glymphatic system, it helps to understand the basics of…

Authors, not Situations, Dictate the Narrative

Image by Tania Van den Berghen from Pixabay

I boarded my third flight of the day, Dallas-Fort Worth to San Francisco, hoping that we would land on schedule so that I would have time to get to my twins’ high school graduation. My day had started with a 6:00 am flight out of Burlington. My friends protested that wasn’t really 3:00 am by California time, but both my circadian clock in my suprachiasmatic nucleus, and my cortex, which thirty years ago wrote a dissertation on neuroscience and biological rhythms, voted to override their assessment. Sleep deprived, flying for the first time in fifteen months, on a crowded Memorial…

Let Republicans value money over people

Photo by Helena Lopes on Unsplash

President Biden recently offered to shave $600 billion from his $2.3 trillion infrastructure bill, but Republicans still balked at the cost. These are the same Republicans who blithely pushed through a massive tax cut for corporations and the mega-rich in 2017, adding a few trillion dollars to the deficit without yielding any sustained increase in economic growth, any reduction in employment, or any other discernible trickle down benefits for American society. Can’t we just let Republicans be the party worshiping the almighty dollar while Democrats continue creating programs that help people?

Both bashing and supporting socialism

Republicans often proclaim American’s…

Guidance for Discussing Your Mental Health or Neurodiversity at Work or Home.

giraffes Image by Christine Sponchia from Pixabay

Sharon felt that she could manage the differences with her in-laws over politics and sports teams but dreaded visiting them. She knew that they might interpret her frequent interruptions and blur out comments as disrespect.

Darren had an upcoming presentation and wondered if it would be appropriate to ask one of his team members to rein him in if he started rambling off-topic in front of the new boss.

Karen knew that her knee bouncing, foot tapping, and waiting until the last minute to do assignments annoyed members of her chemistry class study group, but feared that if she mentioned…

Where do we place the boundaries for diagnosis and treatment?

Image by Hands off my tags! Michael Gaida from Pixabay

An Accurate Diagnosis Improves Life

Midway through our fourth session, Jed started talking about seeing prominent signs of ADHD in his nine-year-old son. Jed had been in therapy and intermittently taking medications for three decades before anyone recognized his ADHD. Now, fifty-three years old, unemployed despite master’s degrees in marine biology, finance, and computer science, he was finally starting to get his own life on track, through understanding how often his ADHD derailed him.

Meanwhile, his son failed to turn in homework that he had completed, waited until the last moment to attempt assignments, and constantly annoyed the household with…

John Kruse

John Kruse MD, PhD, San Francisco psychiatrist, father of twins, marathon runner. Author of Recognizing Adult ADHD: What Donald Trump Can Teach Us About ADHD

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