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778631 tn?1238260276

Is it ADHD or a Bi-Polar Dissorder?

I'm a seventeen year old female diagnosed with ADHD.  I've had this diagnosis since I was eight years of age, and have been on and off several different medication for it(all of which hasn't helped me any).  Recently, I've been noticing a strange, sudden change in my moods.  

I can be very happy one moment, and then suddenly find myself thinking of suicide, or starring at a knife in my hand.  I've also been having bad cutting problems.

It can also lead to very bad tantrums where I destroy numerous things(including punching a screen out to a computer punching through a window, and kicking holes in walls), say things that are hurtful to those around me,  and talk down about myself until I feel even worse.

Whenever the anger part happens, I find myself so angry that my face grows hot and flushes and my thoughts are moving so fast that I can't think or hear a word anyone's saying to me.  It's almost impossible for me to calm down when I get to this point.

My therapist says that now that I'm on my new ADHD medication, my anger problems will stop.  I've been on it for a good two weeks now, and I've yet to notice a change.  All that's happened is that I've become anorexic, and lifeless.

In the last four days, all I've had to eat have been two apples, some chips, and three bites of a burger.  

What should I do?  
14 Responses
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765070 tn?1384869794
What ADHD med does your doctor have you on?  It should definitely work by now.  I am also on ADHD meds but I do not feel like you do.  What is the history of ADHD medications and Did anything traumatic in your life happen recently or in you childhood?  

You are going to have to see a therapist so that you can talk through these problems that you are having.  It really sounds like you are having severe depression and need some help.  

If you are considering suicide, tell your parents, and go the the ER immediately so that you receive the help you need.  

I hope and pray that you get the help you need.  Your life is very precious......................
Helpful - 0
778631 tn?1238260276
I've been on Ritalin, Conserta(sp?), Focalin(sp?), Ateral(sp?), and I'm currently on a generic brand of Ritalin(40 doses).

I've noticed a few changes, but nothing drastic.  The only thing that I've noticed is that I've become sort of zombie like and can't eat much.
Helpful - 0
765070 tn?1384869794
If those meds are making you zombie like then it is possible that you might need to have depression meds along with the ADD meds.  I hate to suggest meds but since you are cutting yourself and having suicidal thoughts it is possibly the only way to make you better.  

I am not a doctor but I know that you really need to get help.  Along with the issues you are having being 17 is not easy.  I remember being 17 and getting so much pressure from my parents and from school, but the difference is that I did not have suicidal thoughts.  

Try to find a therapist and psychiatrist that specialize in teens or adolescents.  They know how to deal with this and the best way as well.  I really do hope that you get better really soon.  This is a tough time in your life but also can be one of the most crucial and exciting times of life.  Don't give up.  There are many people here and that surround you that love you and will support you.  

I suggest also while you are trying to find a dr. that you see about getting involved in a church or community event so that you keep yourself busy and focus on helping yourself first as well as others through support and friendship.  

Good Luck and Keep the faith.  God will not give up on you.  He created you and will always be by your side even if noone else is.  Always remember that.  Anytime you want to talk, I am here.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Definitely you need to find a therapist or psychologist who can get you a real diagnosis and on your way to the help that you so obviously need. I am diagnosed with both ADD and BP and I would bet money on the fact that you are bipolar as well. Not only that but you appear to be having "rapid cycling" a psychotic impulses. Do not wait - find some help as soon as possible before a bad situation gets worse. There's no reason for you to suffer like this.
Helpful - 0
761554 tn?1236177887
I am 40 years old and I thought for all of my childhood and teen life and 20's until I hit 30 before I found out I was not ADHD I was Bipolar. I have done alot of research on psycological disorders and Bipolar disorder can mimic alot of ADHD symptoms. Unorginization, feeling as if you are all over the place but not getting anything acomplished. These feelings can be manic episodes of Bipolar. Do you have times when you can stay awake for a couple of days with insomnia and then finally sleep for long periods of time with no motivation? If so you definitly need to consider the fact you could be Bipolar and your symptoms can make you appear to be ADHD. I take Adderall for ADHD symptoms and Symbyax for Bipolar. But medication works differently for each individual. You should consult your Physician about your suspisions because a misdiagnosis can be very detremental.
Helpful - 0
778631 tn?1238260276
I tried telling her that BP might be a problem, but she more or less forced the ADHD theory on me and showed me a book written by people who attended Harvard, as if that made the diagnosis correct.  

I stay up for long periods of time, and usually feel a horrible lack of motivation.  The ADHD medication she put me on has helped in the fact that I walk around without any emotion.  

I've tried to tell my mom, but she doesn't really believe me.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
You clearly are suffering from some level of depression. And if you are harming yourself, or considering it then you definitely need to be treated in some way.

At this point I think you should go to a psychiatrist if you are not already. General physicians and internists love to play psychiatrist...and attempt to discount psychiatric issues my assuming its something else.

Are you seeing a psychiatrist? If not that is where you need to start. If you are seeing a psychiatrist and he or she ignored your suggestion of BP completely, and didn't even ask you about depression or anxiety, then you really need to get a new doctor.

If all you had is ADD or ADHD, your medicine should be helping you. I have had multiple psychiatrists and psychologists tell me that determining if the medicine helps is basically how doctor's diagnose ADD and ADHD. You think you may be ADD or ADHD...they give you some Adderall...if it helps, they say great, you have ADD here is your medicine.

The fact that you have tried all these meds and are still feeling miserable is something your doctor should be addressing. It is his or her responsibility in fact.

Doctors are not infallible geniuses. They can ask you questions, and you can describe what your feeling to a T, but they will never be able to feel exactly what you are feeling. If they are not willing to listen to your thoughts about what may be going on with you than you need to find someone who will.

I can understand where you are coming from...in a reverse sort of way. I was misdiagnosed as have anxiety and depression problems...even bi-polar when I really was suffering from the fact that my ADHD had not been treated for most of my life. And I had many doctors that ignored my pleas to look at what was really going on with me, going all the way back to when I was a kid. When I finally sat down with a psychologist to talk about my entire life, she looked at my and was like, "have you ever been tested for ADD or ADHD or been medicated for either?" I said not really(I had used Adderall during college to get by, but was not being treated for ADD)....she said "you need to talk to you psychiatrist about it and try a medication." I did and it felt like my life had just begun. Everything fell into place and I felt like a normal person finally. Unfortunately, this all occurred at the age of 23, after about 5 years of incorrect diagnoses and medications.

Basically, psychiatrists and psychologists are training to handle this type of stuff. ADD and ADHD along with depression, BP, anxiety, everything.

From what you have described, it sounds like you really need a second opinion and a doctor that is willing to really listen to you...not just assign you the disease you seem to have the most symptoms of.

I know this got a bit long, but I really don't want anyone to have to go through the mess that I did trying to figure out what was wrong with them. You seem young, and you deserve to be happy and excited about life. If your mom will not take you to see a psychiatrist or to get a second opinion, I think that going to see a guidance counselor at school would be a great idea.

And if you are not feeling any benifit from taking this ADD medicine, call your doctor and tell them that you want off it. There is no reason you should be taking a medication that is not helping you in any way. And honestly, I think most doctor's would say the response you are having is that of a person who doesn't need ADD medication. I know mine would atleast. BUT! BE SURE that if you do decide to stop it that you do it under a doctor's supervision.

Lastly, if you are considering harming yourself you need to tell your parents or go to an ER. Believe me, I understand the pain and frustration you are feeling right now. I felt it for probably more than a decade. I know it is tough, especially when those who are supposed to help you don't seem to helping all that much.

STILL...there is a diagnosis out there that is right for you. One that will make you feel like you. One that will allow you to feel happiness and sadness and every other emotion...not just one or none. I promise. Speak to a psychiatrist and psychologist and get the help that you deserve. You are worth it and derserve to be happy.
Helpful - 0
778631 tn?1238260276
I have gotten a psychiatrist, but she didn't even seem to really care about any of my problems(which seems to be a problem with a lot of people I've been refferd to).  Like you said.  She went with what I seemed to have the most symptoms for and stuck to it.  And saddly it's getting harder to control the anger and the hot flashes I feel are worsening as well.  

I have an appointment on Thursday morning, I plan on confronting her hard core about it.  
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Good for you! The ADHD med isn't doing what it's supposed to based on what u described. And it could be causing your BP symptoms. Being on an amphetamine when you don't need can mess with your head BIG time. Remember, eventhough it's a doctor...it's a business as well...you are a paying customer...you deserve quality care and attention, it's what you are paying for. Your doctor needs to listen to and discuss your thoughts on whatever condition you have...it is your legal right as a patient.

I suggest getting to your Appt early and ask the receptionist for a patients rights pamphlet. You will be very interested in what you find. Take care and good luck. Hope u start feeling better soon.
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
Yes, being on emphatamine if you don't need it will completely mess up your NT's and make you feel miserable. Basically, keep searching for someone who will help you! Hang in there! Doctors are people too, so some might be wrong but hopefully one will be right. I always read stories of people that go to 4-5 doctors until they find someone who will sit with them and help them and finally figure out what is wrong. Hopefully insurance can cover it? But you must see a psychiatrist, not even psychologist, because your issues are pertaining to medicine as well. it must be PSYCHIATRIST, and do not give up!! U are doing great of taking this step and knowing that something is wrong with your body. Please do not give up!
Helpful - 0
Avatar universal
By the way, it is so true about doctors thinking it's anxiety and depression or in my case, just a stressed out college student blah blah. I'm so sick of hearing about it, even my parents who lived with me everyday and they are doctors say the same thing. I listened to them and delayed ADD evaluation for something I have felt for so long. I am finally going to follow what I feel and set things straight. You know yourself, dont let people make you doubt yourself because you are the one that suffers!!
Helpful - 0
765070 tn?1384869794
You really need a psychiatrist but you also need a therapist to talk to regarding the issues that you are having.  A psychiatrist only is there to give you meds and that is it.  A therapist or psychologist will be able to sit down and talk with you and also be able to diagnose what is going on.  

I am praying for you each and everyday.

Melissa
Helpful - 0
778631 tn?1238260276
Well, I have that meeting with her today...  I'll post any updates when I get home from the meeting!  Wish me luck.  :)
Helpful - 0
778631 tn?1238260276
Well, the results are in(sorry for being a bit late on the update).  It turns out that I was right all along.  I suffer from both ADHD, and BP.  I'm now on a mild dosage of Ritlin, and some BP medication.  I can't remember the name for the life of me since it's fairly long.  But, needless to say I now feel %100 free.  No more zombie like behavior, nor am I as angry as I used to be.  :)

Thanks to everyone for talking me through this!!
Helpful - 0
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