Adult ADD is real. It’s recognized. And it’s something that can and should be considered when designing at-home work spaces.

Halbesleben, Wheeler and Shanine studied the workplace performance of those with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (2013) and their findings have proven invaluable for designers confronted with this client challenge.

In eliminating distractions and creating “quiet and organized work areas,” clients with ADD are able to focus better on important tasks. The use of organizational items such as baskets and bins that keep objects from view and managing sight lines to hide major distractors such as televisions should be incorporated into the design.

Simple spaces reduce external stimulation. Likewise, keeping things on an even keel help keep distractions at bay. Uniform ventilation, temperature and proper task lighting should all be considered for clients with ADD. Horizontal surfaces should be free of clutter and house only the essentials, like laptops and lamps. Wallpaper, window treatments and upholstery patterns should be kept simple and art work and accessories minimal.

An effective designer never shies away from asking questions that will offer insight into their clients’ unique personalities and individual needs. It’s the key to creating a workspace that works.

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