Confused about diagnosis!!: I was... - CHADD's Adult ADH...

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Confused about diagnosis!!

Ashfaren profile image

I was diagnosed by my psychiatrist with ADD without hyperactivity, and he gave me stimulants for that, but the stimulants gave me extreme anxiety, panic , hyperstimulation, nervousness, blood pressure problems, so i had to stop them. He told i have anxiety disorder too. But i wasn't convinced that i had ADHD, because i never had any problems in childhood, no parent of mine is ADHD, i have symptoms of ADD but i am still not sure .

I need ur help.

My symptoms are :

Inability to concentrate, or think, slow processing of information, difficulty receiving information in mind, distractibility, procrastination , worry, racing thoughts, short term memory issues, mood swings, hate boring tasks and don't like change, obsess a lot, hyperfocus, tiredness, irritability, no motivation, and some others.

Plz help me understand what is going on.


22 Replies

Sounds to me like ADHD. That’s exactly what my life has been Since I can remember. However, it goes in stages. When I was very young I was a Tasmanian. I was always looking for novelty, engaging in racing behavior, very competitive and at the same time very shy at school. I suffered from high anxiety every time I was called by my teachers( The ugliest feeling will rush through my body , racing my heartbeat as soon as I heard my name) What saved me during my high school years was my very high IQ. I didn’t study much but I just applied logic to everything and I got by.

When I went to college, I became an overachiever, my wild behavior tamed down and I was very responsible. However, distractibility and short term working memory, has been a constant setback at all times and I always had to work double than any other person that didn’t have ADHD( of course, I didn’t know I had ADHD Then). I would have to read the same chapter 3 times in order to remember and process what I just had read if I wanted to get an A in every class. Never took medication for ADHD, and I graduated magna cumlaut.

Now, in middle age, things are getting out of hand and I have to make drastic changes because I’m getting extremely overwhelmed and frustrated as I’m not as sharp as I used to be and my forgetfulness is getting so bad that I thought I was getting the First symptoms of Alzheimer’s. Needless to say, I was paranoid and with high anxiety researching everything about the disease and getting all kind of tests and scans of my brain. Thank God, that was not the case. What I have is ADHD getting out of hand.

However, the situation gets me very upset and I’m becoming extremely short tempered to the point that I’m not fun to be around. I recognize that because I’m being sarcastic and hurting my loved ones,


Bottom line, if you want your life to be less complicated, you better get on medication. You just have to find the right doctor, the right medication and the right dose.

I’m taking an antidepressant and it has helped me somehow but not with my short term working memory and distractibility. I’m a mess! It’s getting so bad that I put something to cook and I get so distracted and hyper focus on something I’m enjoying( short lived, of course)that I’m burning food very frequently 😱

I have 5 books started none finished, I have 🏔 of papers that keeps getting bigger and taller and, what do I do? I start a new mountain somewhere else . Everything is for later and later becomes months later. It’s very hard to have an ADHD brain because you can’t control it on your own. It’s a continued effort and a team work effort. You need everyone in your family to support you, keep your doctor close, have a coach and use many tools to get life on track and in constant check.

Good luck on your search to find the right balance!

Similar situation here too 😂😭, but problem with me is i obsess a lot, about my symptoms, my diagnosis, sometimes i keep worrying that its something else, not ADHD. Still my main concern is that when i am studying or reading anything which i have to, i just can't get the content in my mind as fast as is required. I lose focus quickly, i feel foggy, my brain gets tired too early, and all the effort goes in vain cuz my memory doesn't let me remember anything. Its quite disturbing.

hikergirl33 profile image
hikergirl33 in reply to Ashfaren

I get this too....i will overthink an obsess and i get into this mode of "i have to figure it out!" But i sometimes cant. I think this might be an adhd thing bc the medicine has helped me not overthink so much. I felt some anxiety when i first started meds. Like i drank too much coffee but then my body adjusted. Also i heard the wrong dose and medicine can do that too. Dont be discouraged. Keep trying different ones. I started on adderall and it made me feel nuts with the ups and downs. I really like ritalin. I heard some people dont tolerate stimulants well and doesn't mean your not adhd. Also if u can get a copy of ur doctors notes who disgnosed you it helps to read their words why they think u have it to reassure yourself;)

Ashfaren profile image
Ashfaren in reply to hikergirl33

Yes, i do have ADD, now i am started on Strattera, hope it works.

Thanks for the reply.

Welcome to the club! I was diagnosed in my 50's. Your story is all too familiar. ADHD's favorite companions (I hate the correct word of "comorbidity") are depression and anxiety. Wellbutrin is best known as an antidepressant but it helps with ADHD as well. I take it and the stimulant Vyvanse, but in very small doses. My first pass with a standard dosage of Wellbutrin had me so hyper, I weeded my entire yard in a hour (and for the first time in my life!). So work with your doctor over time to find the right dosage. It's worth it!!

Ashfaren profile image
Ashfaren in reply to woodsprite

Thanks a lot 😊

From what you have stated, I agree with your diagnosis. I discovered that I have ADD while under the care of a psychiatrist for anxiety and depression while studying for my master's degree in special education. I described to my psychiatrist all of the symptoms of ADD that seemed eerily familiar and his diagnosis was ADD the inattentive type.

There are three types of ADHD. There is the more commonly known (and more commonly diagnosed in school age children) ADHD the hyperactive type. The second type is ADD, the inattentive type. A person with this type tends to go unnoticed because they tend to not disrupt classrooms as children, but a person with this type has difficulty with focus and concentration, and has a terrible time with procrastination. I call it scrambled eggs brain. The third type is ADHD, the combined type. This person is hyper and has difficulty with focus and completing tasks on time.

I lived with ADD for 48 years before I knew I had it. I have experienced everything in your list of symptoms, and not knowing why has caused deep feelings of anxiety and depression. I take Adderol to improve my ability to focus, but I continue to struggle. There's no quick fix, but there are people who understand. As far as medication goes, everyone is different -so you need to work with a doctor or psychiatrist to see what works for you. I don't have any support groups near me, but you can see if there are any near you at the CHADD (Children and Adults With ADD) website.

I developed this condition suddenly, within a few days, when i was out for a tour, there i took alcohol, couldn't sleep, next day woke up with hangover like symptoms, brain fog, tried everything but that fogginess never got better. From then it continued till now. Since, the symptoms came on suddenly out of nowhere, its hard to believe it was ADHD.

Definitely sounds like you are suffering from A.D.D.!!! You might be the only one in your family...however you definitely have the major symptoms, which are not the exact same as anxiety. I have suffered from depression, anxiety, A.D.D. and now PTSD...It can be extremely frustrating to find the right medication and the right dose fir you...however it is possible!!! Stimulants have helped my A.D D. tremendously!!! Some people don't do so well w/ really is an individual thing...each person , no matter if they have the same diagnosis as you and symptoms...each person responds differently to medications. There is help out there...check out NAMI, which stands for the National Alliance Of Mental Illness. Please keep your chin up...and no matter how frustrating it gets...don't EVER give up!!! Fight to break the chains that bind deserve it...we all do!!!

Ashfaren profile image
Ashfaren in reply to B19B

Yes, i am fighting it daily.

Thanks a lot for soothing me.


hikergirl33 profile image
hikergirl33 in reply to B19B

Can you tell a difference between your ptsd and adhd?

B19B profile image
B19B in reply to hikergirl33

Yes...I haven't always had PTSD, however I have always had A.D.D...and I can tell the difference between my symptoms, and where they stem from...

hikergirl33 profile image
hikergirl33 in reply to B19B

Thanks for explaining. I think thats why i didnt get diagnosed with adhd until late bc they thought i had ptsd. So sometimes i had doubts about the adhd. I like the stimulants bc it becomes really clear which symptoms r adhd at least for me.

Ashfaren profile image
Ashfaren in reply to B19B

just had to ask few things: i also have difficulty thinking, difficulty receiving information or processing information in mind to be able to understand it. I sometimes feel like in a sort of fog, and mentally tired. I don't know if that is a part of ADD or something else.

Thanks a lot to all, atleast i now know that i am not alone and yes these symptoms are related to ADD not hyperactive subtype.

I noticed that i stare at one point a lot, am confused in busy environments, or public places, foggy headed, can't think,i am in a kind of brain fog while i am out. Is this a sign of ADHD?

Hi. I too have ADHD and it makes my life frustrating. I am replying to your post because I noticed that you said you stare out sometimes. I do the same thing. I never know when it will happen. It happen s at work, and my co workers have noticed me n told me to " snap out of it ". It even happened when I drove one time.

Hi Togetbetter,

There are multiple variations of ADHD... hyperactive, inattentive and various combinations.

Staring at something (point in space) but the mind is somewhere else . Bored in the moment so the mind occupies itself....

is it really slow processing or there is so much going on that it takes a while for the mind to get back to it???

You are not alone... many of us think similarly, yet each has our own way of thinking things through....

Medication does help but is not a magic pill, it takes time to make the right adjustments.

Exercise, diet , meditation also help the brain.

It takes time to adjust, yourself to things.

Ashfaren profile image
Ashfaren in reply to Nick1913

I guess mind is already so much in rush or thoughts are jumping from one to other, that it takes more effort to take in or absorb the information. May be u r right.

Ashfaren profile image
Ashfaren in reply to Nick1913

What medication do u take?

Those are the symptoms of ADHD but if you haven't had them since childhood then it absolutely cannot be ADHD. I've heard of someone who developed ADHD symptoms and it turned out that the symptoms of long term sleep deprivation are very similar to those of ADHD, is it possible that it might be sleep-related?

There is a lot of overlap between ADHD and anxiety, that's true but if it's the stimulant medications that are causing problems then maybe switch to something else. There are medications for ADHD that aren't stimulants. They aren't as widely used, but they exist.

Hypoglycemia (Low blood sugar) also has similar symptoms.

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