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TikTok: A Beneficial Distraction to the ADHD Brain

If you're like me, you downloaded TikTok during the beginning months of quarantine last year and spend too much free time every day on the app. I mean, who doesn't enjoy cute animal videos?

Each TikTok is 60 seconds or less, making content easy to consume for those with short attention spans. The app also has millions of users, so the variety of content is endless which keeps the interest of people with ADHD. Reminiscent of Forrest Gump and a box of chocolates; you "Never know what you're gonna get." I believe TikTok as a whole is catered to the ADHD brain and other neurodiverse people.

This is where the Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (or commonly known as ADHD) community on TikTok comes in. In the past year, I've viewed an influx of ADHD-related TikToks in which creators spread awareness about the disability; specifically, how it effects their daily lives, as well as share tips and tricks they use to make their lives easier with the disorder.

As a person who was diagnosed with ADHD as an adult, I find it refreshing to see the awareness of what ADHD actually is and not the stereotypical label of being "hyper" or "forgetful". ADHD spans across ALL ages and genders, and is genetic, so I’m not surprised to see comments on videos from mothers saying "My child has ADHD, and I think I have it too!"

When I was diagnosed, I experienced this odd relief by just knowing that my issues were real; that my brain suffers from executive dysfunction, and I wasn't just lazy and less than everyone else. I felt, and still feel, that I'm rebuilding myself. The fact that I can go on TikTok and see people have the same realizations about themselves is incredible. Even if someone can't get fully diagnosed, they can use the advice that has worked from people with ADHD and incorporate it in their daily lives; hopefully producing a positive outcome and a better outlook on life.

One TikTok creator I follow is who was also diagnosed as an adult. She makes daily "ADHD Reminder" TikToks where she mentions various things that a person with ADHD may have forgotten about, like a check engine light that's been on for a few months, or that cup of coffee you heated up a few hours ago. Not only can these reminders give users a little "push”, but they're a fun, quick way to connect to the ADHD community.

The heart of the ADHD TikTok community is the comment section of any ADHD TikTok. It's a chance for people to relate to one another and share their experiences. This is where the community thrives, and what I've found to be a positive and judgement-free zone, something we can always use more of in social media.

My hope is that everyone, especially with a disability, can find a community where they can share, learn, and grow. Where they can feel supported and heard. I encourage anyone to find a community where they can be their truest self, even if you find it in an unexpected place like TikTok.