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Adhd Update - Nearly One Year Later


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As many of you know, about a year ago I was diagnosed with Adult A.D.H.D. A very quick recap: My son visited me who was diagnosed with it, and after spending a week with me on vacation, suggested that I take the on-line test. It was off the chart in the positive. So then I went to a very good G.P. doctor who has a history of treating A.D.H.D. We had an interview and it was confirmed. For the last year I have been doing research and study on the condition. Because I have been missing about 20-30 hours of work a month, I decided to seek some further assistance from a board certified psychiatrist with the intention of figuring out ways to to reduce my downtime at work.

They send a rather long and lengthy Q&A package, it must have been over 20 pages, to fill out prior to seeing the doctor. There were a lot of A.D.H.D. questions that I recognized, also an essay question about the history of symptoms and when they started. For me this went clear back to when I was 5 years old. Then after mailing those back in, I got an appointment with the doctor. The first evaluation visit was 3.5 hours long! The questions asked were pretty much the same ones on the Q&A package, but in a different order and more in depth.

The result was confirmed, that I had been suffering from A.D.H.D. all my life. But what was interesting was that the doctor said this, "Most of your symptoms are from A.D.H.D." Which of course means that some of them I have are not. And aside from a mild case of manic depression (which is normally the case with most A.D.H.D. people), these 'other' symptoms were the focus of questions for over 30 minutes. Then he asked me if I had ever had a brain injury, and when that was. The only time I had one was in an ATV accident when I was 35 years old which knocked me out and put me in the hospital for about 24 hours.

Then the killer question ..... "Has your family ever told you about any injuries you may have had in the womb?" I had never heard anything from my parents about that. But a really scary thought occurred to me immediately when he said that. What if my dad did that to my mom?

My dad has been running away and avoiding me for a number of years, even more so since I was diagnosed with A.D.H.D. And, in some cases, A.D.H.D, symptoms can be the result of brain trauma. So, the question remains, how do I approach my mom or dad on this very sensitive question? If my mom and I did suffer from physical abuse when I was in the womb, I would be a little surprised, simply because I couldn't fathom anybody ever doing that to anybody else. But, I admit, my father did have a serious anger problem and its possible the he might have. Of course knowing the truth would help in my treatment, and I certainly forgive my dad (if that's what happened). But still it makes me sick.

I know that most of you come from LDS families and may not be able to answer this question. How do I approach my Mom and ask her if this happened?

Thanks

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I wouldn't touch this with a ten foot pole unless your dad has a history of physically abusing your mom. Other possibilities might be a car accident, a fall down the stairs, etc. If you feel like you need to know, maybe ask your parents if anything happened that would have caused you harm.

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Also understand that it being the result of intrauterine insult is also impossible to know, and most certainly up for debate as to how that even correlates (let alone causes) ADHD. The only reason a clinician may ask that question is to put it with the general picture. The question would not be sensitive or specific in any sense of the words and I would even consider dropping the issue of prenatal trauma entirely unless you have some other reason, completely independent of having someone diagnose you with ADHD, to suppose such events happened.

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As many of you know, about a year ago I was diagnosed with Adult A.D.H.D. A very quick recap: My son visited me who was diagnosed with it, and after spending a week with me on vacation, suggested that I take the on-line test. It was off the chart in the positive. So then I went to a very good G.P. doctor who has a history of treating A.D.H.D. We had an interview and it was confirmed. For the last year I have been doing research and study on the condition. Because I have been missing about 20-30 hours of work a month, I decided to seek some further assistance from a board certified psychiatrist with the intention of figuring out ways to to reduce my downtime at work.

They send a rather long and lengthy Q&A package, it must have been over 20 pages, to fill out prior to seeing the doctor. There were a lot of A.D.H.D. questions that I recognized, also an essay question about the history of symptoms and when they started. For me this went clear back to when I was 5 years old. Then after mailing those back in, I got an appointment with the doctor. The first evaluation visit was 3.5 hours long! The questions asked were pretty much the same ones on the Q&A package, but in a different order and more in depth.

The result was confirmed, that I had been suffering from A.D.H.D. all my life. But what was interesting was that the doctor said this, "Most of your symptoms are from A.D.H.D." Which of course means that some of them I have are not. And aside from a mild case of manic depression (which is normally the case with most A.D.H.D. people), these 'other' symptoms were the focus of questions for over 30 minutes. Then he asked me if I had ever had a brain injury, and when that was. The only time I had one was in an ATV accident when I was 35 years old which knocked me out and put me in the hospital for about 24 hours.

Then the killer question ..... "Has your family ever told you about any injuries you may have had in the womb?" I had never heard anything from my parents about that. But a really scary thought occurred to me immediately when he said that. What if my dad did that to my mom?

My dad has been running away and avoiding me for a number of years, even more so since I was diagnosed with A.D.H.D. And, in some cases, A.D.H.D, symptoms can be the result of brain trauma. So, the question remains, how do I approach my mom or dad on this very sensitive question? If my mom and I did suffer from physical abuse when I was in the womb, I would be a little surprised, simply because I couldn't fathom anybody ever doing that to anybody else. But, I admit, my father did have a serious anger problem and its possible the he might have. Of course knowing the truth would help in my treatment, and I certainly forgive my dad (if that's what happened). But still it makes me sick.

I know that most of you come from LDS families and may not be able to answer this question. How do I approach my Mom and ask her if this happened?

Thanks

Simply ask your Mom if there had been any thing happen while she was pregnant with that might have caused injury to you. It could be anything, slipping on ice and falling to (use your imagination). There is no reason to jump to conclusions.

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Also understand that it being the result of intrauterine insult is also impossible to know, and most certainly up for debate as to how that even correlates (let alone causes) ADHD. The only reason a clinician may ask that question is to put it with the general picture. The question would not be sensitive or specific in any sense of the words and I would even consider dropping the issue of prenatal trauma entirely unless you have some other reason, completely independent of having someone diagnose you with ADHD, to suppose such events happened.

It's not directly related to A.D.H.D., but, from what I was to understand, there are a few symptoms that are related to trauma, not A.D.H.D.

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As many of you know, about a year ago I was diagnosed with Adult A.D.H.D. A very quick recap: My son visited me who was diagnosed with it, and after spending a week with me on vacation, suggested that I take the on-line test. It was off the chart in the positive. So then I went to a very good G.P. doctor who has a history of treating A.D.H.D. We had an interview and it was confirmed. For the last year I have been doing research and study on the condition. Because I have been missing about 20-30 hours of work a month, I decided to seek some further assistance from a board certified psychiatrist with the intention of figuring out ways to to reduce my downtime at work.

They send a rather long and lengthy Q&A package, it must have been over 20 pages, to fill out prior to seeing the doctor. There were a lot of A.D.H.D. questions that I recognized, also an essay question about the history of symptoms and when they started. For me this went clear back to when I was 5 years old. Then after mailing those back in, I got an appointment with the doctor. The first evaluation visit was 3.5 hours long! The questions asked were pretty much the same ones on the Q&A package, but in a different order and more in depth.

The result was confirmed, that I had been suffering from A.D.H.D. all my life. But what was interesting was that the doctor said this, "Most of your symptoms are from A.D.H.D." Which of course means that some of them I have are not. And aside from a mild case of manic depression (which is normally the case with most A.D.H.D. people), these 'other' symptoms were the focus of questions for over 30 minutes. Then he asked me if I had ever had a brain injury, and when that was. The only time I had one was in an ATV accident when I was 35 years old which knocked me out and put me in the hospital for about 24 hours.

Then the killer question ..... "Has your family ever told you about any injuries you may have had in the womb?" I had never heard anything from my parents about that. But a really scary thought occurred to me immediately when he said that. What if my dad did that to my mom?

My dad has been running away and avoiding me for a number of years, even more so since I was diagnosed with A.D.H.D. And, in some cases, A.D.H.D, symptoms can be the result of brain trauma. So, the question remains, how do I approach my mom or dad on this very sensitive question? If my mom and I did suffer from physical abuse when I was in the womb, I would be a little surprised, simply because I couldn't fathom anybody ever doing that to anybody else. But, I admit, my father did have a serious anger problem and its possible the he might have. Of course knowing the truth would help in my treatment, and I certainly forgive my dad (if that's what happened). But still it makes me sick.

I know that most of you come from LDS families and may not be able to answer this question. How do I approach my Mom and ask her if this happened?

Thanks

I fell out of the crib and cracked my skull, possibly twice. Not sure if they realized at the time and took me to the hospital or found out later. I did a lot of climbing as a toddler over a six foot fence and such. Could be other injuries occurred that no on knew about. Didn't know this until in my late teens early twenties when we were trying to figure possible triggers for my migraines. One accident I do remember was hitting the dashboard when I was thirteen when my grandmother was distracted by my younger siblings in the backseat and turning around to scold them, turned the wheel, drove off the freeway, through a barbwire fence and into a ditch and back up out of it before we stopped. Thank fully no one had major injuries, but no doctor mentioned a word about possible whiplash or other side effects. Since then I have had pretty much non stop headaches and a constant ringing in my ears that I didn't connect with that event due to the gradual increase of symptons. The accident itself felt like nothing though because it was too quick. Hit the dashboard right between my eyes, causing the nose piece to draw a little blood and that was it. My younger sister got a bloody nose when her knee hit her nose, Grandma some bruised ribs. Grandma didn't even want us to call Mom and Dad to worry them....I thought getting a bill from the hospital out of the blue might be a bit more traumatic.

Just being a car that has to stop suddenly where your head is whipped back and forth can be injurious to a child (and an adult).

Anyway, this is just to say there are lots of was as young child that we cause injury to ourselves without any malicious intent being involved.

You could start out by asking if you were a climber as a toddler, maybe refused to drive with your seat belt on and got hurt at all just doing normal kid stuff...though maybe a little more intense if you had ADHD at the time. And then you could just calmly ask if your mom had any accidents while pregnant, pregnant women not being known for their grace. My mother went toboggan riding when I was four years old and someone being overly clever decided that I should be her driver....for the first 20 years of my life I was always hearing about how I destroyed Mom's back (not from Mom, but from those who were actually responsible and though it was funny because they didn't realize the level of injury it actually caused....not my dad who stuck me there and then didn't make sure nothing with wrong.

There are just so many little things in life that can cause major longterm injuries if they are ignored. That they happen is nothing to be fearful of life, but it can make life better if we start paying attention to them and not just expect some to go walk it off or whatever.

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Oh, don't ask her the question you are thinking of asking. Instead ask her (without your dad being present, since she might have fallen or done something she never told him about, just as much as suffered abuse) if anything happened when you were little or even before you were born that might have resulted in a concussion or other brain injury that wouldn't have been detected at the time.

As the conversation goes on, tell her that the dr says that sometimes people report that they were in accidents or that someone hit them and that there are a whole lot of things that might have resulted in a previously unidentified brain trauma. Statistically, it is more likely that she fell heavily or something else, than that your dad hit her. And even if she were hit, that it was someone other than your dad.

As you are talking about this, you can follow up with "Mom, I'm not trying to blame anyone. My dr is just trying to figure out how to help me and the way to do that is different if there might have been brain trauma" if you see her reluctant to share.

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Messenger,

Many studies now show that there is a strong genetic component to Adult ADHD. Other studies show that women who smoke or drink alcohol may have an increased risk of having a child with ADHD. Still other studies show that the presence of certain toxins in the environment, such as lead or PCBs, may also have a role in causing ADHD and interfere with the brain development of children. Finally, there are even some studies that indicate that too much TV may be associated with ADHD.

In short, it appears that there might be numerous causes of Adult ADHD. I'm just glad that you were finally correctly diagnosed and can now receive the appropriate treatment.

You seem like a very courageous person and I really wish you well in your endeavors.

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Messenger,

Many studies now show that there is a strong genetic component to Adult ADHD. Other studies show that women who smoke or drink alcohol may have an increased risk of having a child with ADHD. Still other studies show that the presence of certain toxins in the environment, such as lead or PCBs, may also have a role in causing ADHD and interfere with the brain development of children. Finally, there are even some studies that indicate that too much TV may be associated with ADHD.

In short, it appears that there might be numerous causes of Adult ADHD. I'm just glad that you were finally correctly diagnosed and can now receive the appropriate treatment.

You seem like a very courageous person and I really wish you well in your endeavors.

Peppermint Patty,

Thanks for the kind words. Actually, life is pretty good right now despite recent events.

We're pretty sure that all of my A.D.H.D. symptoms are hereditary since my son's is equality as bad. I grew up and worked around plenty of farm chemicals, he did not. My son does not have constant ringing in his ears, headaches, or rare temporary blindness which occurs for about 4-5 hours every 6-12 months, like I do. Those are symptoms they say that are associated with brain trauma.

As far as one of the A.D.H.D symptoms, anxiety, both my son and I have it. Just this last weekend I started my first treatment for it and its like a new world! I think I must have given the best lesson ever in High Priest group that I have ever given. I think its really going to help cut down on lost hours at work. They say that's one of the side effects of the Adderall is a slight increase in anxiety, and if an ADHDer has anxiety already, well that just makes it potentially worse. The treatment is incredible, the world just got a lot less intense for me today.

Again, thanks for the response ... ;)

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You mentioned an injury at age 35 that is sufficient to cause a traumatic brain injury. You really don't have to look farther back than that, unless you had symptoms prior to that age. I recommend reading Boys Adrift, which discusses the effects of medication for ADHD on drive. There are less noxious choices available; please be careful.

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You mentioned an injury at age 35 that is sufficient to cause a traumatic brain injury. You really don't have to look farther back than that, unless you had symptoms prior to that age. I recommend reading Boys Adrift, which discusses the effects of medication for ADHD on drive. There are less noxious choices available; please be careful.

I did have symptoms prior to that. The ringing in my ears and headaches have been ongoing. The blackouts started at age 33 before the quad accident. Im pretty comfortable with the choice I made on the ADHD meds, and yes, the side effects were noticeable for 3 months. But now after a year, the only side effects are the increase in anxiety, which the other meds take care off. I am well aware of the issues with stimulants, but the medical fact is that they work best for those that suffer standard hereditary ADHD. They are also the least expensive. There are also other reasons why I went that way including the need for weight loss. Also, the meds that take care of anxiety also lower blood pressure.

Edited by Messenger
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There is one more thing I wanted to post on the subject. One of the challenges with A.D.H.D. is the "H"part of it - Hyperactivity. When this occurs in an adult, it often translates to anxiety. As a child, we are not nearly as limited in our ability to be "Hyper". However, as adults, our society really clamps down on that. We have schedules to keep, money to make, and obligations to fulfill. There is very little time to just run outside and do a bunch of summer-salts or climb trees or play dodge-ball! (which I always won by the way).

The result is anxiety. The problem with it is that this symptom often leads to the inability to function, and that coupled with another A.D.H.D. symptom, hyper-focus, has made me miss countless hours at work. Just a short time ago I went to a new A.D.H.D specialist to see if there was a way to help with the anxiety. He has prescribed Guanfacine (1mg) to treat that. It was originally developed to fight high blood pressure, but the side effect was lowering of anxiety. The FDA has now approved this for A.D.H.D. patients who are also on a stimulant (Adderall) which treats the ability to focus. The side effect of Adderall is that it does increase the already present anxiety in A.D.H.D. patients. So its a natural combination of medication for those that have A.D.H.D.

Its made all the difference in the world for me this week. My blood pressure is 128 / 78 and I didn't miss one hour of work this week! This is the first week in years that this has happened. I cant imagine what its going to be like to actually get a full weeks pay!

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Excellent.

I had a friend with ADHD that made sure he got to the pool every morning and swam until he was exhausted to deal with the hyper side of things, but he worked out of his home and so his hours were more flexible and he was able to go pretty much drugfree....but he also had a very rigid schedule though for everyone involved with him so totally predictability for him at least. Not everyone...hardly anyone actually has that kind of options.

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Excellent.

I had a friend with ADHD that made sure he got to the pool every morning and swam until he was exhausted to deal with the hyper side of things, but he worked out of his home and so his hours were more flexible and he was able to go pretty much drugfree....but he also had a very rigid schedule though for everyone involved with him so totally predictability for him at least. Not everyone...hardly anyone actually has that kind of options.

Cal

One thing to keep in mind as well is that there are varying degrees of A.D.H.D. My son and me have it just as bad as it can get. I have worked out of my home for several companies. Two of my own, and one when I was a Project Manager for a company in Maryland. Exercise helps, but when it comes to tasks for the day, when things start to go south, anxiety reigns! So, while drug treatment is not for everyone, isn't it nice to know that at age 48, that someone suggested that I give it a try? That wasn't meant as a poke at all, but merely reiterating why I am public with this. If I had known or been diagnosed at an early age, I may have been able to deal with life much better. There has to be literally hundreds if not thousands of adults like me with un-diagnosed A.D.H.D. and they don't know why their lives are the way they are. Its better for them and society if someone can encourage them to seek treatment.

I can see the Lords hand in the pattern of this. There is much to do.

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I understand, we had a mutual friend, a kid with ADHD, whom he took in to stay with himdue to trouble at home,who he tried to talk into going off his meds by using his system. Would have been a big mistake even if the kid had enough self discipline to stick to the schedule.

One thing I've learned with my sleep disorder is that everyone has to come up with what works for them, not only are disorders widely different, but people can respond to treatments so different.

I gave the example above just to show how I got that the hyper aspect doesn't really mesh well in our current society and thus those who experience it have to look for solutions out of the box. I didn't mean to imply that exercise was some kind of fix for everyone with this issue.

I am 52 and still hoping to find something that will allow me to move out of survival mode, if it doesn't come I've still got a goof life and I will be happy, but there are still so many things I'd like to do.

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..... everyone has to come up with what works for them, not only are disorders widely different, but people can respond to treatments so different.

Thanks, and it was needed on this post. There are indeed different treatments for everyone. One of the things I found was to try and identify what my next step would be. For me I hated missing work. That led to me and my boss defining what I was feeling when I had to leave from work. Then from there I found that people with A.D.H.D. often have some anxiety, but its also amplified with the meds I was taking. Then some research on a specialist for A.D.H.D. in my area led to the appointment and the fix. I'm sorry to hear that you have a sleep disorder. I hope you find what you are looking for.

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Called up my Mom last night and she did remind me about an accident I had when I was 15 years old - I was in a van full of LDS Christmas Carolers which went of a road and rolled about 5 times down an embankment. The particular symptoms didn't actually manifest themselves until after that accident, so that's probably the one.

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