Jump to content
CrazyBoards.org

Yet another "Do I have ADD" thread


Recommended Posts

Ok so Im sure you get this all the time but I have to ask anyway because this lack of attention crap is starting to mess up my life.

I'm not sure if its ADD or not. I have always been "stuck in my head."  I never realized that this wasn't normal until a few years ago.  I don't see the things around me much.  Its like constant daydreaming.  So I wonder if that could be the cause and not ADD.  I just don't know how to pull myself out.  (Does this make sense? If not I will re-explain)  Here's whats going on...

For one, any time I do a psych test online (which is way too often I think) I come up high on ADD (the inattentive variety).  This last ADD specific one (not from a drug co.) read...

"It is highly likely that you are presently suffering from adult attention deficit disorder, according to your responses on this self-report questionnaire. You should not take this as a diagnosis of any sort, or a recommendation for treatment. However, it would be advisable and likely beneficial for you to seek further diagnosis from a trained mental health professional immediately."  And yes, they added the bold.  ;)

I've never had an attention span for much of anything unless I am all-consumed by it.  I had trouble reading the damn ADD quiz, but other times I can be up all night on boards or reading with no problem. But if I'm not totally into something then I feel foggy and distracted and no amount of forcing me is going to get me to pay attention.  And if I am all-consumed by something then no other external/internal stimuli will get in.  (I don't hear the cats wanting to eat, I forget to eat or pee etc.)  But then it appears to me like I have selective attention and if I can I focus on the things  that interest me, how the hell can that be a d/o?  Isn't it just lazyness?  (asking in relation to myself-not judging others)

I do well in school, (extremely well if I like it).  I do the best when school is interactive.  Just lecture and I tend to wander, so I take copious amounts of notes, because I can focus more on a lecture if I am writing.  Then I do my night before study thing and I am fine.  And still there are things that I just "know" we never went over in class, but it turns out we did, I just missed it.  Before I found what works for me I would always get the "has ability lacks ambition/effort" on my report cards in school.  Even when my grades weren't bad.  I could just never focus on what I was supposed to be doing.

But then I wonder, how can I remember all this stuff in school but can't remember simple house chores without detailed lists?  And why is it that I just don't "see" the messes as they accumulate?  I have a hard time when people talk to me and have at times (job interviews etc.) ended up in a panic attack because I knew I should be listening but just couldn't focus on a thing they were saying. 

I lose things all the time, tune out constantly (used to even do that during sex  :)   ) am always confused, distracted, late, overwhelmed, lost, impatient, can't prioritize, etc.   

Then theres the impulsivity...but I wonder is it BPD related, BP related, ADD related or am I just an asshole? 

My question is does this sound like ADD?  I know no one can Dx but I just wanted to know if others had similar experiences.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It sounds very much like me, I think, but I don't know about the official diagnosis. At present, my psychiatrist is batting about the notions of ADD or Asperger's. I've been on Strattera for several months for ADD without any noted improvement, and my performance under test conditions is apparently borderline. Arrrrgh.

On a minor hijack, lack of response to one medication does not necessarily rule out the diagnosis. Also, Asperger's and ADD are not mutually exclusive. I don't fricking care how many diagnoses I collect as long as I can find a tolerable way to stay healthily engaged with reality.

Your experience feels similar to mine, but since I don't know what I officially am, I can't say much more than that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Uhhh..YEAH. YES.

Sounds exactly like it to me - exactly like me, pretty much.

I just got an official Dx recently. Adderall is life-changing. Not perfect, but changing, definitely. Mucho benefit. Can DO STUFF, even DULL STUFF.

Get thee to an LD/ADHD (Learning Disabilities) Specialist for testing pronto. If their findings are positive, you will not run into any troubles trying stims, at least after Strattera or some such.

Without it, though, you may have a hard road to proper treatment. I sure did.

But I'm on pavement now, so all is better.

pigs

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Ok so Im sure you get this all the time but I have to ask anyway because this lack of attention crap is starting to mess up my life.

I'm not sure if its ADD or not. I have always been "stuck in my head."  I never realized that this wasn't normal until a few years ago.  I don't see the things around me much.  Its like constant daydreaming.  So I wonder if that could be the cause and not ADD.  I just don't know how to pull myself out.  (Does this make sense? If not I will re-explain)  Here's whats going on...

For one, any time I do a psych test online (which is way too often I think) I come up high on ADD (the inattentive variety).  This last ADD specific one (not from a drug co.) read...

"It is highly likely that you are presently suffering from adult attention deficit disorder, according to your responses on this self-report questionnaire. You should not take this as a diagnosis of any sort, or a recommendation for treatment. However, it would be advisable and likely beneficial for you to seek further diagnosis from a trained mental health professional immediately."  And yes, they added the bold.  ;)

I've never had an attention span for much of anything unless I am all-consumed by it.  I had trouble reading the damn ADD quiz, but other times I can be up all night on boards or reading with no problem. But if I'm not totally into something then I feel foggy and distracted and no amount of forcing me is going to get me to pay attention.  And if I am all-consumed by something then no other external/internal stimuli will get in.  (I don't hear the cats wanting to eat, I forget to eat or pee etc.)  But then it appears to me like I have selective attention and if I can I focus on the things  that interest me, how the hell can that be a d/o?  Isn't it just lazyness?  (asking in relation to myself-not judging others)

I do well in school, (extremely well if I like it).  I do the best when school is interactive.  Just lecture and I tend to wander, so I take copious amounts of notes, because I can focus more on a lecture if I am writing.  Then I do my night before study thing and I am fine.  And still there are things that I just "know" we never went over in class, but it turns out we did, I just missed it.  Before I found what works for me I would always get the "has ability lacks ambition/effort" on my report cards in school.  Even when my grades weren't bad.  I could just never focus on what I was supposed to be doing.

But then I wonder, how can I remember all this stuff in school but can't remember simple house chores without detailed lists?  And why is it that I just don't "see" the messes as they accumulate?  I have a hard time when people talk to me and have at times (job interviews etc.) ended up in a panic attack because I knew I should be listening but just couldn't focus on a thing they were saying. 

I lose things all the time, tune out constantly (used to even do that during sex  :)   ) am always confused, distracted, late, overwhelmed, lost, impatient, can't prioritize, etc.   

Then theres the impulsivity...but I wonder is it BPD related, BP related, ADD related or am I just an asshole? 

My question is does this sound like ADD?  I know no one can Dx but I just wanted to know if others had similar experiences.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well, it sounds like you've been following ME around, and I have ADD w/o hyperactivity.  I am very good at thinking abstractly, creatively, making detailed plans for projects, etc.; however I am very bad at executing the mundane details.

Kind of like what you were saying, even if it's a mundane or rote task, if I'm really into it, no problem.

And don't even get me started on losing things and the lack of organization. Right now I'm piling up all the CDs and all the cases, it's taking up my dining room if you count the DVDs and I'm going to TRY to work on putting them back where they belong, before the whole lot gets strewn all about the apt.--again. I have run through this exercise so many times since AUGUST, it's not even funny.

I can't remember if you said you're under a doctor's care, but definitely see one. It took me 2 years to believe and then accept it, because I could be highly motivated and efficient when I wanted to be, and that was the key. If I'm into it, no problem, but if it's boring, I'm distracted. My tdoc thinks it's misnamed. He thinks they should call it Attention Distraction Disorder. Because I have no deficit when it comes to paying attention to things that stimulate my thought processes or creativity. It's all the other daily crap that is miserable.

FWIW.

Suze

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Wow...I swear you just described my life.  I have had such a hard time trying to explain how my brain works, or doesn't work.  You put the words that I couldn't seem to express out there so perfectly!!!

My problem is that I am currently taking 20mgs. of dexedrine and I honestly don't see any changes.  I haven't told my pdoc yet because I'm still struggling with the idea that I even have ADHD (I am also a hyper spaz.)

Sorry for the thread hijack.  I just question why the dexedrine doesn't do anything for me.  Is it possible that the dex isn't cutting it, or maybe I'm not ADHD at all?  I have my next appt. with pdoc on Friday, so I'm going to see what he suggests.  I was just wondering if anyone out there has dealt with an ADHD med that was useless.

aimee

Link to comment
Share on other sites

There are several ADD meds on the market for two very good reasons.  One  pertains to side effects:  some are tolerable for person β, while others are not.  Another is that med A won't necessarily work for person β, but med C might.  To the best of my knowledge, Dexedrine's inadequacy doesn't necessarily mean you don't have ADD.  Perhaps your doctor should a. raise the dose (I think Dexedrine's max is quite a bit higher than 20mg) or b. try you with another stim. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think I might have ADD also. As a child it was always reported to my teachers that I "had a lot of potential" that was being wasted. I was always bored with homework to the point of crying and my mom doing it for me. Very active as a child and bored when there was nothing to keep me interested. In middle school I got in a ton of trouble, even recommended for expulsion.

In high school, I started using drugs (weed, lsd, shrooms, drinking, etc) mostly out of boredom and the fact that I couldn't really keep a relationship with anyone but a few close friends. Having a girlfriend was out of the question because my self esteem was too low. A few classes in school kept me interested, mainly math and computer science. I made it through college with a degree in Computer Science, although sometimes struggling in stupid classes like english, but excelling subjects I was interested in.

Now I sit behind a fricking desk all day and I'm having a lot of trouble with staying focused on my work. We have internet access that is unrescricted so 30-50% of the day I usually surf instead of work. I've been on lexapro for a year because of anxiety/depression but I'm starting to wonder whether ADD could be at least partially to blame. I just started seeing both a psychiatrist and psychologist to try and find what is really wrong with me.

I've taken adderall in the past for studying and even abused it (which I am over with) but I felt like it helped me out of lot with concentration and staying focused. I was able to get sooo many things I struggled with much done on adderall, like cleaning my apartment, picking up piles of clothes on the floor, etc. I really don't want to try Strattera because of all the bad things and side effects I hear about it.

I don't want them to rule me out or anything just because I've made it this far in life without being treated. My job and future is on the line if I can't work efficiently. My doctors also treat a lot of drug addicts so they seem reluctant to give anything addictive. How should I approach them about it? Any experiences and comments are welcome. Sorry for the long post!!!  ;)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I think I might have ADD also. As a child it was always reported to my teachers that I "had a lot of potential" that was being wasted. 

ah, we could build a mountain with the wasted potential report cards of ADDers.

In high school, I started using drugs (weed, lsd, shrooms, drinking, etc) mostly out of boredom and the fact that I couldn't really keep a relationship with anyone but a few close friends. Having a girlfriend was out of the question because my self esteem was too low. A few classes in school kept me interested, mainly math and computer science. I made it through college with a degree in Computer Science, although sometimes struggling in stupid classes like english, but excelling subjects I was interested in.
it's not uncommon (with inattentive type) to be able to concentrate and excell in subjects that interest you.

Now I sit behind a fricking desk all day and I'm having a lot of trouble with staying focused on my work.

on the other hand, if you do have ADD, this is exactly the time of thing that's impossible to stay on task with.

I don't want them to rule me out or anything just because I've made it this far in life without being treated. My job and future is on the line if I can't work efficiently. My doctors also treat a lot of drug addicts so they seem reluctant to give anything addictive. How should I approach them about it? Any experiences and comments are welcome. Sorry for the long post!!!  ;)

a lot of people are not dx'd until later in life.  esp. if you are innatentive type and if you're smart enough to "get by."  i wasn't dx'd till grad school... some people are even later.

as for the drugs, there are lots of stats showing that people with ADD tend to use more drugs than those without it as a form of self-medication.  have you been honest with them about your use?  is it all in the past? 

as long as it's in the past, they should be ok.  also, if it's not, and you're smoking pot, pot can cause ADD like symptoms.

there's a test called a qEEG (quantative eletroncephalogram) that according to the book i'm reading is 90% accurate in dx'ing ADD.  though most doctors use questionaires.

the best people to do ADD screening are usually docs who treat children because they have the most experience with it.  if your docs (b/c they are scared of sub abuse) are unwilling to consider the dx and you feel it may really be a problem for you, you may want to seek out another doctor just for screening purposes who specializes in ADD, etc.

good luck.

penny

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I just wanted to chime in and say that I was recently diagnosed with ADD (inattentive) at 30 yrs old.  I was one of the ones who could get by in school and work, so it was never diagnosed.  I got by, did fairly well even, but I struggled a lot. 

Once I realized that ADD might explain a lot about me, it still took me forever to approach a doctor about it.  I figured because I'm an overweight adult with a history of depression who's never been officially diagnosed, any doc is going to think I'm just looking for stimulants and laugh in my face.  But I was starting to have trouble concentrating at work to the point where I was making mistakes and missing deadlines and getting even more stressed and anxious, so I figured I might as well start trying to deal with it rather than risk losing my job.  I lucked out and got a doc who listened to me and took me seriously and started me on Adderall, which is helping a lot. 

I think it's definitely worth talking to a doc about your concerns.  Good luck!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Would it be a good idea to bring a filled out test (like this one: http://docrotz.com/adhd_class1/ADDScaleSan...bara1rev903.pdf) and bring it to my psychologist when I start therapy today? This will be my first session with her and I'm not really sure how these things work. I don't want to feel like I'm telling her how to diagnose me or whatever but I want to let her know what my problems are.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Would it be a good idea to bring a filled out test (like this one: http://docrotz.com/adhd_class1/ADDScaleSan...bara1rev903.pdf) and bring it to my psychologist when I start therapy today? This will be my first session with her and I'm not really sure how these things work. I don't want to feel like I'm telling her how to diagnose me or whatever but I want to let her know what my problems are.

when i first suspected i had ADD i brought in something simmilar to that to my pdoc.

but i'd already been seeing him for several months and knew his temperment.  i'd say for most doctors, something like that could be helpful/ can't hurt.  esp. since it is a diagnostic questionare, and not an internet quiz that says "you may have add."  bringing in a questionare isn't saying you have self dx'd, it's saying that you suspect you have a problem and you are asking the doc for their opinion and help.  (maybe even say something along those lines, like you think ADD may be an issue, so you brought this in for him/her in case it would help him/her help you.)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The results are in.. she pretty much dismissed the idea of me having ADD which I think is BS. I gave her all my symptoms since childhood and told her I suspect it. She said no, your symptoms are probably due to the stress caused by anxiety and depression and wants to move forward with treating those. She says that it's not ADD because I've done well in classes that I was interested in.

The problem is my SSRI is working well, my anxiety levels are way down from what they were and my job hasn't been stressful lately. They really aren't causing me many problems that I can tell. I have not had any depression since starting lexapro. I've decided not to continue therapy with her and possibly look for an ADD specialist OR seeing my general doctor who originally prescribed me the SSRI.

Again, my symptoms are (and these are exactly what I've told her):

-Problems since elementary school with homework, easily bored.

-Always reported that I was not living up to my potential.

-Behavioral problems in middle school, recommended for expulsion, again bored with schoolwork.

-Drug problems starting in 8th grade, again boredom.

-In high school I did well in classes I was interested in, not so well in boring classes.

-College same thing as high school

-At work:

---hard time concentrating

---easily distracted

---interested in working on the challenging stuff and not the tedious stuff

---trouble starting and finishing projects

---trouble sitting still at meetings and at my desk all day

---trouble following exact instructions

---trouble reading at times (have to re-read same paragraph)

---figidy

---play on the internet a lot instead of working

---need to listen to music when working on extremely tedious tasks or they will not get done

---forgetfull, memory problems

---head feels foggy and often feel like in a daze

---often misplace import things like keys, wallet

---trouble organizing things like desk, room (luckily my girlfriend is great at it)

the list goes on and on :/

Link to comment
Share on other sites

...and possibly look for an ADD specialist OR seeing my general doctor who originally prescribed me the SSRI.

Get a specialist's opinion before you even try talking about stims with your GP. If the specialist's results show positive, then you can take that with you, documented, and you'll not have (not too much - maybe a little) trouble.

Otherwise, you'll just look like a prowling speed freak. Any responsible Doctor is not going to go that route without compelling evidence due to the highly abusable nature of the stims.

Don't know how long you've been in therapy/treatment, but consider this:

It took me fours years with a Pdoc to get the idea - and another year to get a formal Dx and try stims. Months before my decision to go get the evalutaion, my pdoc had told me that he "wasn't going to prescribe stims to adults anymore, but I'll refer you if needed". I believed him, and came in all sad and ready to part ways after my eval...but he changed his mind for me. He was actually the person who referredme to the ADHD specialist, so I guess her word was good enough for him.

Even the specialist wanted more than my anecdotes, though; the kicker for me was my daughter's school administered psycosocial evaluation - in which 2 teachers and myself rated her as "clinically significant for add-inattentive". What with ADHD, by some counts, being around 97% heritable (far more than eye color or IQ), that was enough to get it through.

Just a little perspective. I think for most people, it isn't an easy thing - especially if there is any appearance whatsoever of impulsive self-diagnosis. Taking my time, being thorough and considered about the steps I took, and (maybe most of all) reasonably cooperative in the process of elimination paid off for me. The stims are working pretty well in all areas, from depression to anxiety to focus to motivation.

pigs

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Made an appointment to see the ADD specialist on Friday. $400 to be paid out of pocket since my $1100 deductable has not been met. ;) I think we are going to do a 1 hour evaluation session, then they will send me home with a test to take and bring back at my next appointment. They'll review it and decide if I need med or whatever. Sounds promising so far. I'll probably bring that list of symptoms I wrote above.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 4 weeks later...

Several doctor visits later and I'm diagnosed ADD and taking Adderall XR 20mg. Doing good so far, it has a calming effect over me and I can concentrate better on things that need to be done.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Cheers! Working for me, too. Glad you got the right help.

pigs

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...