Going to the doctor to finally discus... - CHADD's Adult ADH...

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Going to the doctor to finally discuss adhd.

ChoaticAdhd profile image

I finally made the decision to talk to my doctor to help with adhd, which I have never been diagnosed but know I have had it. I have always had issues with concentration staying focused being on time etc. I can’t even watch a full movie because I get distracted. I start something then something else catches my eye so I start that so nothing ever gets done. I also have anxiety and depression. I forget things all the the time, I always tell my doctors I’m fine when they ask because I feel like they won’t believe me but I’m at my wits end. How do I go about telling my doctor that that’s my concern without looking like I’m seeking medication. That’s always been my fear about telling my real problems to them.

21 Replies

Hi ChoaticAdhd!

Let me start off by saying I like your screen name! I have had Adhd all my life. I wasn't diagnosed until 2009. My primary physician referred me to a psychiatrist who had me take a multiple choice exam. That along with conversation and anecdotal evidence he diagnosed me with ADD (typically you take the "h" out when your an adult). He started me on a regimen of Adderall 20mg. The results were remarkable. My attention deficits were dramatically improved along with my gumption to get tasks completed. Most remarkable was the increase in focus I suddenly found to have. It was so much easier to get things done without tangenting to something completely unrelated.

Most primary care doctors are very hesitant to prescribe psychostimulants because of addiction concerns. I am sorry that you seem to be in that situation. This is my advice: go to your primary care doctor and ask for a referral to see a psychiatrist. If he asks why know that it is your right NOT to inform him if you think he won't do it if you tell him. As a doctor he has already proven himself amiss by not taking your concerns seriously. If push comes to shove, call your insurance and ask if you can do a self-referral. Essentially, you call around until you find a psychiatrist who is accepting new patients. I did this exact same thing when I needed a therapist. At the time, I was new in town and had no primary care doctor yet. I called my insurance and they gave me the "green light". What ever you do, DON'T GIVE UP!. You need and deserve treatment and a psychiatrist is absolutely the best way to go. Even if your PCP prescribed you the medications you should also be seeing a psychiatrist-this is what they do. From my experience PCP's are a pain in the ass when it comes to these type of things-they don't want the responsibility.

You are suffering and your quality of life is diminished by harboring this illness. Don't be afraid to stand your ground-you deserve it. You can call on me anytime you like. Good luck. I wish you the best.

-MSGSTL

ChoaticAdhd profile image
ChoaticAdhd in reply to MSGSTL

Thank you and yes I know I don’t really have the hyper part as much I also suffer from mixture connective tissue disease which is an autoimmune disease that mimics about every auto immune disease it wants too so that gives me the chronic fatigue. My quality of life really has diminished has gotten worse over years. I barely graduated high school and tried to do the college thing but just couldn’t focus and keep everything on track and organized, so I dropped out. I’m 27 now and I do have a relevantly new doctor who seems more compassionate, my old one never listened to any of my concerns even when she prescribed me the wrong anti depressant and I told her i didn’t feel right on it, told me to let it work longer well it messed with me so much I eventually attempted suicide, because that certain medication was messing with my mind and even with me pointing it out she just basically dropped it. I’m not social at all anymore never go out with friends, this is the longest job I’ve held down and it’s been 2 1/2 years but I’m always getting gripped at for missing something or forgetting to do something and being late cause I procrastinate so much and just simple stuff. I don’t know I know I’m rambling on and probably making this hard to read sorry. I’m just at my wits end though, I know I can accomplish more and be further in my life if I could have managed to focus on serious stuff my whole life.

MSGSTL profile image
MSGSTL in reply to ChoaticAdhd

Hello again!

I read your reply and I completely relate to your situation. I won't get into details but I have had some very scary thoughts myself. I self-medicated trying to cope with my OCD that went undiagnosed for many years. The "breakthrough" if you want to call it that was finally reached when I had my first visit to a psychiatrist. He was so calm and reassuring about the nature of my problems. Up until then I blamed everything on myself. I would think, "Why am I such a f*ck up? What's f*cking wrong with me?" The first thing the psychiatrist told me was it wasn't my fault. It was just a matter of chemical imbalances in my brain. This was incredibly liberating like a warm blanket when your cold, the words just wrapped around me soothing my aching mind.

I too have an auto-immune disorder called SCA-6. I have problems walking and balance issues so I can relate to your physiology. Sounds like your new doctor will be a better fit for you. I hope he empathizes with your situation. In all honesty, I hope you get a referral to a psychiatrist. They are specially trained to deal with ADD and the depression and anxiety you feel.

As far as work and society in general goes screw them until you get back on track. You need to be all-consumed with yourself right now. Don't think of it as being selfish, think of it as being tuned into what YOU need. Your very young, you will have plenty of time to be "politically correct" later on down the road! Just remember who number one is and remember loving yourself first is necessary to fully love someone else. It's all about self care. It's all about you.

-MSGSTL

ChoaticAdhd profile image
ChoaticAdhd in reply to MSGSTL

Yea it was a complete waste of time tried pushing me too more antidepressants which I told her I’m tired of being shoved antidepressants down my throat and none of them have worked I feel like I used to not be as depressed until they started me on depressants and it has just got worse throughout the years but she wouldn’t listen

in reply to MSGSTL

Is there anything that actually works that they don't class as addictive ? If something works people won't want to stop it, does that make it addiction or a need ? I'm so tired of reading about doctors thinking things are addictive, especially when it comes to grown adults. If we can run a house, drive a car, raise a child and know how to dress, why are we treated like babies when it comes to meds ?

ChoaticAdhd profile image
ChoaticAdhd in reply to

Exactly anti depressants are just as well you can’t just stop anything right away. Like I know what is not working and obviously if I’ve tried like 12 or more different antidepressants look for something else ya know? It’s ridiculous just because some people do abuse drugs doesn’t mean everybody does, and shouldn’t make the assumption. I work with recovering addicts like what kind of sense does that make? It just annoys me how doctors don’t listen to you most of the time.

in reply to ChoaticAdhd

Mate, I just don't get it. I was told yesterday that we should be able to discuss what works, what has worked in the past and for the GP to weigh up the benefits against the risks. What's even more frustrating over this whole addiction saga, is that people get these meds to sell by pretending they are addicted. They also manage to fool the benefits system into thinking their on tanks full of meds, whilst those of us who the meds are needed can't get them, making us have time out of work that we can't afford. I'm not trying antidepressants again, I was so desperate to shift my anxiety in accident and emergency one night, that I was talking to an old man who was on gallons of sleeping tablets and had been for many years, I was tempted to actually ask him to sell me one so I could just go and get my head down.(I didn't ask but I did keepnthinking about it) I need to find a decent GP, who understands that I need to be in work just as much as they do.

ChoaticAdhd profile image
ChoaticAdhd in reply to

Yes I’m done with my GP in that aspect I started counseling & am getting set up with a psychiatrist

in reply to ChoaticAdhd

Good luck with it all. I saw a private psychiatrist in 2017 who thinks I have ADHD, he said he thinks ADHD rather than bipolar but if not ADHD then bipolar, took the report to my GP and got labelled a benzo seeker on the spot. I can't even explain how badly I have been treated.

ChoaticAdhd profile image
ChoaticAdhd in reply to

I know it’s like if you get in that line of work do it because you have compassion not for a paycheck. I would rather not have to take any medication honestly but the sad fact is I have too. Everyone I have seen primary’s, specialist, etc they all have been assholes

in reply to ChoaticAdhd

I guess when it comes to mental health they have the upper hand, if I hadn't had another bàd experience with hospital, I would never have requested my medical notes and I would never have discovered they were classing me as a benzo seeker. I think I'm actually going to report that nurse to the NMC because she refused to assess me, treat me or take me seriously, her notes prove that, my bank statements and emails would prove that I was actually going through a crisis.

in reply to ChoaticAdhd

If more people held them accountable for their actions, they would think more conscientiously, it's dispicable that vulnerable people are being ignored and classed as liars

ChoaticAdhd profile image
ChoaticAdhd in reply to

I would honestly cause when you tell them something is not right and they are not listening that’s on them.

MSGSTL profile image
MSGSTL in reply to ChoaticAdhd

Excellent news about the psychiatrist! Be assertive in the medications you want-firm but mannerly. Let us know how it goes.

-MSGSTL

MSGSTL profile image
MSGSTL in reply to

There is Strattera which is not a psychostimulant. It helped with my focus but did not help with gumption/motivation. I used it for nine months then switched to Ritalin. Your absolutely correct in your theory that doctors treat us like children. They don't want the responsibility of prescribing potentially addictive medications to their patients. That can be overcome by seeing a psychiatrist. This is what they do. They understand the mechanisms at play thus prescribing comes natural to them. An evaluation takes 20 minutes and then an action plan is made. You are on your way to the medications that will best treat your symptoms. Sometimes, it is a matter of trying many different medications until the correct mix is realized. Be patient, this will come in time.

Peace.

-MSGSTL

I’m sorry to hear about your experience with your previous doctor. Unfortunately a lot of doctors don’t take ADHD seriously, especially in adults. If you think that your new doctor might be more understanding then I would bring it up with him/her, but if not then it might be better to go with MSGSTL’s suggestion.

Also, while it is fairly common for ADHD symptoms to change as you mature, not everyone looses the hyperactivity, and many people never had it in the first place, so the ADD vs ADHD has less to do with age than with the symptoms that you find most prominent.

Yea I have counseling set up already i self referred myself a few weeks ago but that’s in quit some time and right now I got put on disciplinary action for me always being late and forgetting stuff they have asked me to do. I have to try and keep track off clients doctors appointments when their medications run out along with trying to keep track with my kids appointments or mine and I have never been the best at that I’m always scattered brained and spacing out when I’m being talked too and I don’t even realize it until they mention my name. This is the longest job I’ve been able to hold down without impulsively quitting or being fired. So that makes me nervous I have one more time to be late pretty much, and I’ve set my clock to wake up earlier multiple times it never matters.

For all the appointment remembering I would suggest a bullet journal, or at least a bullet journal style planner. You have all the days in the month listed on one side and you mark down key words on the day of each appointment (who’s appointment where) and on the other side you write down all the details (repeat the date, who and where, add the time, why, and anything you need to bring or do beforehand). This method is the first planner I’ve been able to keep up using for more than a month or two (I started last May) it’s been a lifesaver. I would suggest How to ADHD’s video on it on YouTube if you want to learn more.

For the spacing out while people are talking, I would suggest a couple of things: the first is trying to be an active listener, actively respond to what they’re saying, jot down notes if it’s important, and be honest with them if you missed something they said; the second thing is having something small to figit with, just a little pocket treasure as I call them would do (a little toy, figurine, or fake coin, or anything else small enough to keep in your pocket).

I just want to chime in that setting alarms.. lots of them.. on my phones calendar helps me ALOT. Little alarms to remind you that today is this apt. Or this bill. Or my daughters class picture day etc. Helps so much!! Also certain foods help with focus too! A good raw orange, beet and carrot smoothie helps with brain fog for me. Which used to be so bad I had to quit my serving job a year ago. So much better since I started eating better/more nutrients.. more sleep. I am 34 and just got diagnosed with ADHD 5 months ago. No meds yet. For me it is mainly the many tasks i have to do.. cant sit still. Ignore my family as I hyperfocus hours on this project/study/passion or that. I have a hard time jujusjujust being present.. :(

I'm sorry you're having such a difficult time. ADHD and ADD are hard to deal with. I second the recommendation to get a referral to someone who specializes in ADD. (Yes, adults can have the hyper part too. I do, but not in the same ways my sister or brother do.) Medication can help, if you are willing to 'try, try again' until you find the right one for you. It took me a lot of years off and on to figure that part out. What helps most is learning. Learn about ADHD. Learn about yourself. Learn coping strategies from others. Then use those lessons, those tools, those methods, to help you improve your life. Remember... *people* make mistakes, all people, not just people with ADHD. Don't kick yourself when you mess up, think about why, and think about ways to avoid that mistake again. But more importantly, think about ways to specifically *succeed* at that task.

Here's a suggestion... When I was working, and these days when I have a particularly early doctor appointment, I use my alarm clock with the giant double bells on top, that I have to manually set the night before. And I place that clock across the room, so I have to get up completely out of bed to cross the room and turn it off. And absolutely do not go back to bed.

It helps, when I can buckle down and do it, to set out my clothes and briefcase/tote etc the night before. But if I get up early enough, it's not essential.

Best wishes on your quest for better living. You can do it!

Yea I have no problem waking up with my alarm I guess it’s more of time management I get side tracked with something and completely loose track of time. Yea I referred myself to counseling but have to do that so many times before I can even be seen by a psychiatrist. Seems like I’m always messing up and I’m not a dumb person it’s just I can’t stay on track I hate it. I just wished my doctor would see I have tried every antidepressants and they never work there’s obviously something else going on, it seems that the longer I have been on antidepressants over the years it has changed me and made me more depressed. I’d have my random days like everyone else with depression but I get down down now and can’t shake it for weeks. It’s like I feel like my life could have turned out so different then it is now if they would of caught on before. I was late today good thing my other coworker covered for me because I couldn’t remember where I had put my car keys. It’s just always chaotic and I’m always beating myself up about the simplest things.

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