Re: does add/adhd overlap with bipolar?
Yes, ADHD and BiPolar may overlap. Doctors want to see the symptoms of ADHD appearing before the age of 9 to diagnose ADHD. The probability is unlikely that other disorders are the cause of attention problems before age 9. After age 9 the risk of other disorders developing, such as bi-polar, increases dramatically.
Likely, (there are no guarantees) you were accurately diagnosed with ADHD at age 4. Then at age 13 you developed co-existing BP - your ADHD did not go away. The BP gets added on top of your ADHD. I know. It sucks.
I'll assume you mean by "360 degrees turn about" you have periods when you do well followed by times when you do not do so well.
I think I got something that can help. Bear with me through a lot of details. You need to understand how researchers were able to determine the severity of the symptoms that affected each participating patient in a study to use their method yourself.
This study shows how prevalently BiPolar co-exists with ADHD in adult patients. The methods they used is what I like you to understand.
The percentages given are for adults in the group diagnosed with ADHD.
19.4% of adults with ADHD have Bipolar Disorder.
18.6% of adults with ADHD have major depressive disorder and 12.8% have dysthymia.
47.1% of adults with ADHD have an anxiety disorder.
The study showed what we all suspected. ADHD and BP often run together.
Let's talk about the method the researchers used. What follows is really the important stuff:
To determine how badly each participant in the study was being affected by their disorder, the researchers used a series of questions that I thought were well designed to help the patients give objective, accurate answers.
The researchers asked how many days out of the last 30 days when study participants were:
1. Totally unable to carry out normal daily activities.
2. Cut back on amount done or time spent on daily activities.
3. Cut back on the quality of their work.
The participants were also asked for the number of days when they had trouble controlling their emotions when around other people.
All of us should ask ourselves those same questions, write down the questions and our answers, and give our written report to the doctor managing our mental health.
Doctors depend largely on patient feedback to direct the course of medical treatment. I can not think of anything we could do as patients that would give our doctors a better picture of how the prescribed course of therapy is going.
Ask yourself and answer these questions in writing once every month and give your reports to your doctor on scheduled visits. I'll bet you a megabuck, you'll see the next turn for the worse coming in time to avert the down turn altogether.
I'll tell you, mental disorders really suck. I did not ask for a whacky brain. I'll bet you didn't either. It sucks. Good news. Scientists have discovered a lot of things we can use to unsuck a good part of our lives. We have to do our part. The questions the researchers developed help us do a very difficult job - give doctors accurately the information they need to help us.