5 Signs Adult ADHD Shows On Your Face—And Why You Shouldn’t Try to Mask It?

If you have ADHD, you’ve definitely experienced some awkward or unpleasant situations. Perhaps you were overly enthusiastic, inattentive, or unaware of how others felt. Neurodiversity can be eccentric as well as brilliant. Here are some techniques to help you recover and showcase your abilities.

ADHDers aren’t known for keeping a serious face.

We are generally recognized for being impulsive, energetic, and frequently sidetracked. It adds to our allure. But, when it produces confusion and misunderstanding (as is frequently the case), that “charm” might feel more like a curse, draining your energy and destroying your self-confidence. If you don’t have a few go-to recuperation tactics, that is.

Adult ADHD Is More Common Than You Believed

You may recognize yourself in the reactions detailed here if you have ADHD. If you don’t, this article may help put your unusual reactions to a loved one, friend, or coworker with ADHD into context.

According to research, one in every five persons has a learning or attention deficit, but much fewer understand the diagnosis and how this “disability” displays itself in real life. Others have frequently told me and other people with ADHD that we should be less outspoken because expressing our true feelings might be polarizing.

I used to believe the same thing. Yet, after a decade of being ‘out’ as having ADHD, I’ve found that being myself is more effective than suppressing my emotions. Why hide differences, even if they are unpleasant? Masking can amplify emotions of inadequacy and worry while dampening expressions of love, concern, discomfort, and comprehension.

According to the Cato Institute (a recognized public policy think tank), 62% of people are reluctant to talk or share their beliefs, particularly when it comes to politics. It’s no surprise that so many individuals misunderstand one another!

ADHD Test (Self-Assessment)

This simple evaluation is for adults who suspect they may have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Read My ADHD Face: Neurodiversity Appearances Differ

Neurodiversity is the belief that neurological variances, such as ADHD, are caused by normal, natural genetic variations. The term represents a new way of looking at previously pathologized conditions such as ADHD. ADHD is increasingly being referred to as a characteristic rather than a disorder. Without a question, I see the world through a different lens, but I see this as a strength, not a problem.


1. The Anxious Face

ADHD ers operate at a faster pace than most people and maintaining a game face 24/7 is very difficult for us. We have more thoughts (and expressions!) than most people can think of before breakfast. I perceive patterns and sense emotions like a bat trained in echolocation. I’m also a unique thinker who can be blunt, emotive, and sympathetic all at the same time! Some consider these characteristics to be the hallmarks of thought leaders.

When we’ve had enough or have lost interest, we tend to frown impatiently. After we finish an online activity, we’re done. If you see this during an in-person gathering or party, take it as a clue that we’ll be waiting outside.

During long meetings or Zoom conversations, a little downturn of the jaw, clinched teeth, or tucked chin suggests that we’ve had enough information and need a break. Informing others as soon as possible that the situation has deteriorated can frequently save time and aid in teamwork.

2. The Yuck or Yum Face

“Don’t yuck someone else’s yum”, as teachers frequently advise students in the cafeteria. This is something we do frequently. We use our faces to snub a colleague’s ideas without even realizing it. You didn’t plan to do that, but your face took over.

I accidentally yucked a colleague’s PowerPoint presentation—I swear it wasn’t my intention. Yeah, I have strong thoughts and opinions, and sure, they occasionally show on my face. I apologize.

It’s worth noting that because COVID-19 has kept us cooped up for so long, we may be out of practice when it comes to socializing. The result could be an increase of inadvertent feelings on our faces. The good news is that we can improve our expressions by practicing in front of a mirror. (Alternatively, check through your phone’s photographs. Have you noticed any frown patterns?)

Your tongue isn’t a weapon. Make good use of it. At home, practice looking nice.

3. The Puzzled Face

This is the expression I make when I think I’ve communicated clearly but no one around me understands what I’m saying. It gives the impression that you are speaking Greek.

Numerous programs for persons with learning and attention impairments provide improv classes. It’s one of the most effective techniques for helping people understand and express themselves clearly in group settings.

Facial intervention is one of my favorite workouts. This can be done anywhere. Pay attention to your emotions and try to overcome your natural proclivity to frown or scowl. Instead, immediately raise your lips into a smile 10 times. You’ll wind up with a more neutral or peaceful appearance.

4. The Red Face

There is no makeup that is opaque enough to hide this look. It’s brought on by things like mild anxiety before a job interview or meeting someone for the first time over Zoom. Your pulse quickens as if you were running from a burning building with your pants on fire.

Being red in the face (and out of breath) is embarrassing, but if you are self-aware, you can use a technique I learned in yoga. Breathe in through your nose and out through your mouth to a count of four to relax.

Breathing awareness is essential for concentration and slows your mind. Who cares if this newfound focus is accompanied by some huffing and puffing? Now that you know what’s going on, you can turn that embarrassing situation into a learning moment.

5. The Game Face, also known as the Blank Stare

Do you know that rock-solid expression people make when trying to concentrate? That is simply not instinctive for us ADHDers.

Our game face resembles a blank stare – a look that conceals the true you. The intellect is capable of coming up with creative ideas or solving difficulties at breakneck speed.

Turn your head side to side once or twice the next time you feel your eye muscles freezing up in order to appear ‘normal’ and attentive. You will begin to unwind and be yourself.

Being hypersensitive (particularly to what we perceive to be criticism) is a symptom of ADHD. We smell, hear, and taste twice, maybe three times as intensely as regular people—crazy, right? So all of the negative comments about our actions were quite upsetting.

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