You may have heard of online tests and quizzes that help you find out whether you’re neurodivergent. However, these tests don’t give you a diagnosis1
The term ‘neurodiversity’ describes people who have brain differences1. These differences can cause challenges such as autism spectrum disorders, dyslexia and ADHD but they also create strengths like good memory or being able to mentally picture three-dimensional (3D) objects easily.
What is neurodivergence?
Neurodivergence is a concept that recognizes that no two brains function exactly alike. Rather than treating differences as a disease, the idea is to embrace them. This can be in the form of specific diagnoses like autism, ADHD or dyslexia as well as more generalized differences such as social anxiety, OCD, or depression. Many people who are neurodivergent are self-advocates for their causes and fight for rights, acceptance and inclusion.
While the word itself came from a group of autism advocates, it is a broad umbrella term that applies to anyone who thinks, interacts and behaves differently than others. Educators are recognizing a significant portion of their students are neurodivergent and are taking action to provide accommodations to support them.
These include providing visual cues in classrooms, allowing students to work at their own pace and using a variety of communication methods. For example, some individuals who are neurodivergent prefer written communication such as text messaging or instant messaging over face-to-face conversation. Others may use noise-blocking headphones while in school hallways or prefer to communicate via videoconference instead of face-to-face meetings.
In some cases, the difference in brain function can be a direct result of a trauma or emotional distress, such as severe anxiety or depression. However, in most cases, the difference is innate and exists from birth. Neurodivergent people often choose to see their differences as strengths, which is why the concept has gained so much traction among the community.
Neurodivergent people can still struggle with discrimination, but they are becoming more empowered to speak out and fight back. Some of these people have become successful and renowned in their fields, such as animal scientist Temple Grandin, Oscar-winning actor Sir Anthony Hopkins and Nobel Prize-winning physicist Marie Curie.
The neurodivergence movement is a positive change. The idea of embracing our differences is becoming more accepted and supported, and that’s good news for everyone. It also means that more research is being conducted to find ways to improve our lives. For example, scientists have been able to discover that some types of medications can help alleviate the symptoms of certain mental health conditions. This can help more people get the treatment they need.
What is the CareClinic app?
The Clinic App is a free-to-use tool clinicians use to aid the patient education process. It is accessible from desktops, laptops, tablets, and cell phones and can be used by all members of the clinic team. The Clinic App has been designed to be easily navigated and understood by neurodivergent patients and their support networks.
Patients can use the app to manage their medications and book appointments with the clinic or pharmacy. The app also allows patients to set up reminders for medication and events. Patients can also learn more about their health and wellness, book health-related challenges, and even create a living will from the comfort of their home.
CareClinic’s customizable Advance Care Planning feature helps prepare people for difficult but necessary discussions with their loved ones about their medical treatment wishes.
How do I know if I’m neurodivergent?
There is no single characteristic that can be used to prove someone is neurodivergent. However, there are some common signs. For instance, a lack of eye contact can indicate a person may be on the autism spectrum. Another sign is a fixation on a particular subject, such as marine biology. Many people with these intense interests have gone on to make incredible discoveries and inventions.
There are also online tests and quizzes that can help you determine if you have neurodivergent traits. While these tests are not official, they can be helpful in getting an idea of how you think and behave. However, you should always seek a professional diagnosis before identifying yourself as being neurodivergent.
It is also a good idea to talk to family and friends about your concerns. Often, those close to you will be able to identify moments in your life that could suggest you are neurodivergent and can offer support as you move forward with seeking a diagnosis. Furthermore, they can also provide a different perspective to your situation and be able to highlight aspects that you may not have considered.
Another way to know if you are neurodivergent is to take a symptom tracker or diary. This will give you a better understanding of your symptoms over time and can help pinpoint patterns or trends that may be useful in finding a diagnosis. The CareClinic app has a number of symptom tracking tools, including an Adult ADHD Self-Report Scale and mood disorder questionnaire, which you can access through the Scales & Assessments tab.
In addition to these symptom trackers and diaries, you can also get more information about neurodivergent conditions by reading academic journals, watching videos on YouTube or visiting advocacy websites. It is important to remember that despite the fact that many of us have different brains, we are all the same in other ways. The differences that we experience can be a challenge at times, but they can also create strengths such as excellent memories and being able to solve complex mathematical problems in our heads.
How do I manage my neurodivergence?
As neurodivergence becomes more well-known, people who identify as neurodiverse may find that they face a number of challenges. These challenges can be related to social dynamics or work-life balance. They might also be impacted by the fact that the world is still largely set up for neurotypical individuals.
However, the truth is that there are many benefits of being neurodiverse as well. Some examples include increased creativity and a stronger sense of self-worth. These qualities can also make it easier for them to manage their mental health.
There are a variety of tools that can help you assess your neurodivergence. Some of these tools can be found online and are designed to be used without a doctor’s appointment. These tests will not replace an official diagnosis, but they can provide you with some validation and help you understand your brain a little better. Some of these tests include the Aspie Quiz, RAADS-R Test, and the Neurodivergent Music Test. The neurodivergent music test is designed to help you assess whether you are an individual who might benefit from specialized musical training or accommodations. It works by playing different parts of a song in separate headphones, creating a unique audio effect known as 8-dimensional music. Many neurodiverse individuals report that this type of music can help them with sensory overload, stress, and anxiety.
It’s important to remember that although the term neurodivergent was originally used in relation to autism, it has since come to be applied to a wide range of conditions. These conditions include autism, ADHD, Tourette syndrome, dyslexia and schizophrenia. It is estimated that 15-20% of the world’s population has some form of neurodivergence.
If you are a neurodiverse individual, there are many things you can do to manage your condition. These strategies can include finding a supportive community, reading about the topic, and learning more about the benefits of neurodivergence. Additionally, it is helpful to keep a record of your symptoms and how they impact your daily life. CareClinic is a great tool for this, as it allows you to track your symptoms and their impact on your mental and physical health, all in one place.