Aspiring pilot with ADHD

I realize that this isn’t really a topic meant for a site like this, but I just need some advice, because the FAA is quite strict about medical conditions, and for a good reason, I have ADHD, but I would like to know what I could possibly do to start flying in the industry weather it is General aviation flying, commercial flying (A320) or just cargo or private flying?
Anyone has any advice, thank you!


I can try to answer this to a degree, but just realize I’m no professional in the medical aspect. From what I’ve read and heard, there are some medications that one may have to take for ADD or ADHD conditions. The medications alone are often the main disqualifying reasons why some may not be able to pursue becoming a pilot. The medications often have side affects and those side affects are the ones that the FAA are often most worried about (i.e. drowsiness, slower motor function skills, etc).

There is also something called a SODA. No, not the canned beverage. Its a Statement Of Demonstrated Ability. Its a certificate sort of thing that the feds can issue should you have a condition that might hinder your abilities to fly an aircraft… let’s say compared to someone who might not have a condition. I’ve often seen these issued to some pilots who may have mild symptoms of colorblindness. Yes, some color blind pilots have been able to fly and receive a pilot certificate as they’ve been able to correctly identify colors.

Definitely something to look into if you’re actually serious about becoming a pilot and definitely something to research online. Might be worth also scheduling an appointment with an Aviation Medical Examiner to discuss this as well as they’re the go to professionals for something like this. Not your personal doctor or someone else you may see if you get sick or something as they won’t know the legality of certain things.

Hope this helps!


Your best bit is to go and speak to an AME (aeronautic medical examiner). You should be able to search for one near you on the internet.

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@FlyingWithPilot1- as someone who is also an aspiring pilot and needs to obtain a SODA (among other things), do this ASAP! The average process takes 12-18 months.

Additionally, make sure you schedule an appointment with a HIMS, not just an AME. An AME will defer you, extending the process.

Good luck!


Thank you for the information!

I need to see an AME before next year because i need to see about my Ulcerative Colitis (UC) aswell.

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Seeing an AME is mandatory whether you have a condition or not. They are the only people who can grant an FAA Medical Certificate (or similar, depending on your residence).

That said, the AME you see may defer you to a HIMS, physician, or other doctors to ensure that it is safe to certify you.

Wishing you the best regardless; UC sucks!


Trust me, im very lucky I dont have one of those bags, and i have a very very very mild UC level. I only need to take mininal meds and i havent had a flare up since DEC 2019, which is exellent!


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