What Does It Mean When You Have Trouble Concentrating?

Whether you're working from home or studying, there will be certain points in the day where you may feel burnt out or struggle to concentrate. But for some, this can be a regular occurrence outside of activities that rely on a dedicated amount of focus and concentration. Interests and hobbies can become a monotonous task, and attention can feign fairly quickly during conversations.

As Healthline notes, a lack of concentration can also have a direct affect on your ability to make decisions, as well as forgetting important appointments and meetings. Focus, attention, and concentration all work in tandem within in the brain, which occurs through a specific process as neurologist Dr. Joel Salians told Harvard Health Publishing. "You're brain's executive function helps you plan, make decisions, and – perhaps most important – pay attention," he said. "It acts much like the captain of the ship."

While everyone can experience a lack of concentration or attention on a day to day basis, it can be a cause for concern if you feel it's happening more than usual. So, what does it mean when you have trouble concentrating?

A lack of concentration can be a symptom of mental health issues

Trouble concentrating or a lack of focus and attention is often a symptom of many mental health disorders. One condition that this symptom is most often linked to is attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, otherwise known as ADHD. According to Healthline, a lack of concentration and focus is "the most telltale symptom" of the condition. Other symptoms of ADHD like forgetfulness and issues with time management can also go hand in hand with issues concerning concentration, and these signs often lead many adults to wonder whether they should look for a diagnosis.

However, according to the Mayo Clinic cases of adult ADHD can be challenging to diagnose as symptoms often cross over multiple other conditions including anxiety, mood disorders, and depression. But if you feel that your issues with concentration are debilitating enough to affect tasks in your work and life in general, its recommended to talk with your doctor or a health professional to see whether you may have ADHD or another condition like generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) or obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), per VeryWell Mind.