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As adults with ADHD, sometimes it can be a challenge to find a good career fit. However, if we play to our strengths, we can find jobs that are thoroughly fulfilling. I’ve put together a list of healthcare jobs that are good for people with ADHD and you may find that you are perfectly suited to at least one of them!
The struggles that come with being an ADHD adult can often feel overwhelming. We have to work hard to function in ways that our neurotypical peers find simple. I talk a lot about my own journey with ADHD and hope that, by sharing my struggles and what works well for me, I can help others to lessen their own coping battles.
Here’s the thing though. The symptoms of our ADHD don’t always have to leave us at a disadvantage. In fact, sometimes they can work in our favor! For example, we work well under pressure and we have the considerable strength of being able to think on our feet. These abilities (and others) make many of us a perfect fit for healthcare jobs.
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I am not a healthcare professional but have had lots of experiences in the medical fields. And, as an ADHD adult, I also know the strengths that come with our territory. Those experiences put together led to the conclusion that healthcare jobs may be the ideal career for many of us. Below are the top three jobs that are good for ADHD adults.
Healthcare Jobs that are Good for People with ADHD
We know that mainstream work and schooling can be a challenge for people with ADHD. But, right off the bat, if you think about how healthcare workers are trained, you can already see the advantages for us ADHDers. Sure, some of the schooling does take place in a traditional classroom. But, a lot of it also happens on the job.
Think of nurses and doctors with their clinicals and residencies. They aren’t sitting at a desk to learn, they are on their feet and interacting with their patients. We already know that the more movement that occurs while we are performing cognitive tasks, the better off we are. So, training in the healthcare professions is going to naturally suit our learning style! That can only help set us up for success.
So the question is, what healthcare jobs are good for people with ADHD?
ADHD People as EMTs or Paramedics
When you think of the job requirements for an EMT or Paramedic, what comes to mind first? Quick thinking, cool under pressure, and focused are all things that I think of.
When an EMT shows up to a call, they need to be able to quickly assess the situation. Then, just as quickly, they need to be able to decide on the best course of action. People with ADHD have the ability to think quickly and adapt well. This allows them to make those split-second decisions and act on them without hesitation.
Also, nothing that an EMT encounters is happening in a bubble. They need to be able to perform their jobs while there are different levels of chaos going on all around them.
Our ADHD hardwiring allows us to work very efficiently, even in the most high-stress situations. And, our hyper focus means that we are able to drown out the things that don’t pertain to our current task and focus only on the things that need to be done.
ADHD People as Emergency Room Nurses or Physicians
Working in the ER requires skills similar to those used by EMTs. Fast thinking and quick actions are a must. The extreme focus and ability to work under pressure that many ADHDers have are perfect for this setting also.
ADHD brains are also made for things like hard labor.
The long shifts that ER healthcare professionals work can be handled well by our brains and bodies. Our creativity can also be an asset in the stressful environment of the ER. Since no two patients are ever likely to be the same, being able to come up with creative solutions to problems (and quickly!) is another important asset in the ER.
ADHD People as Labor and Delivery Nurses
No two mothers are the same and no two newborns are alike either. Each labor and delivery experience is unique and each one takes a great deal of care. While many deliveries go off without a hitch, there are some that require the quick thinking and attention to detail that many ADHD brains have in spades.
Another attribute we have that works well in the delivery room is our great empathy. Because of the challenges that we face, many of us feel a lot of sympathy for others who are struggling. And, you don’t have to be a parent to understand the intense emotions that occur in a labor and delivery room.
Being able to empathize with new parents who are on an emotional roller coaster is a fabulous trait that ADHDers can bring to the table.
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Being able to work well under pressure also serves us well in the labor and delivery room.
Being a calm presence can make all the difference to a laboring mother. This is especially true if she is a first time mom. All the books and all the classes in the world can’t quite prepare you for the realities of childbirth and the beginning of your parenting journey. Having a calm nurse by your side can make all the difference.
Other Healthcare Jobs that are Good for ADHD People
Obviously there are many more healthcare jobs available, and lots of them could be a great fit for us ADHDers. The jobs that I have mentioned really play to our strengths and work well with our challenges. From getting the education necessary to perform these jobs, to carrying them out successfully, these healthcare jobs may be the perfect career for many ADHD people.
Are you a healthcare professional with ADHD? I’d love to hear about what you do and how your ADHD works to your advantage! Let me know in the comments below.