Is "Time Blindness" a Real Medical Condition?

Some people are running late pretty much everywhere they go, but it turns out, there may be more to it than them just being inconsiderate. A TikToker recently went viral for a tearful video of her sharing that she was scolded after asking about accommodations for “time blindness,” a condition she says makes it harder for her to show up at work on time. While the comments section is full of those blasting her for what many assume is something she made up, mental health experts say it’s legit.

“Time blindness is a difficulty with a perception of time, how much time is passed, how much time it’s going to take to do something, and it can be quite impairing to people,” explains Stephanie Sarkis, a psychotherapist who specializes in ADHD. “It’s a real thing that’s been researched.”

People who experience time blindness struggle to keep track of time and estimate it. Sarkis says it’s more common in those with ADHD, but it can happen in anyone who has impaired executive functions related to the frontal lobe area of their brain, which is responsible for things including judgment and self-control.

  • People with depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, PTSD and other mental health conditions can also have time blindness.
  • If you consistently over or underestimate how much time has gone by or are running late no matter how hard you try, you may be time blind.
  • Ari Tuckman, a psychologist specializing in ADHD says people can also experience temporary periods of time blindness if they’re grieving, stressed, drunk or sleep-deprived.
  • People struggling with time blindness can use alarms, timers and scheduling apps to help them arrive on time.
  • They may find analog clocks with hour and minute hands can help them keep track of how long things take better than digital clocks.
  • Being sleep deprived can make time blindness worse, so getting plenty of sleep is beneficial.
  • See an ADHD specialist if you struggle with time blindness so they can help you with treatment.

Source: USA Today

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