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Old 10-21-2011, 11:50 PM   #1
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Problems focusing

I was diagnosed with social anxiety in 2007. I took celexa for about a year and stopped because i gained about 40 lbs in that time. My doctor said it was not related to the meds but i completely disagree. After that the anxiety was still there but i was determined to deal with it in other ways. Just in the last year or two i have finally got control of it for the most part. I now can make phone calls on my own (my husband use to have to do that for me), i am willing to go on trips, i volunteer at my children's school and i do a lot of other volunteering in the community. So i felt like things were finally normal. Except recently i've started having problems with focusing. I take college classes and i can not for the life of me stay focused on reading and often i completely zone out when someone is talking to me. I thought maybe i have ADHD because i have some other symptoms. I made an appointment and the doctor was asking me about my history and he thinks its anxiety again. I feel so defeated. I worked so hard to overcome all of my anxieties and now i don't have those issues anymore, but now i have new issues! I don't even know what this would be classified under. I have an appointment on Monday with another doctor who is going to run some tests and determine which is it, anxiety or ADHD and go from there. I really want to avoid anxiety meds because i do not want to gain weight again weight gain just makes me depressed and i don't want to go down that road. I also feel like this is something that i cant overcome on my own. To top it off, because its so difficult to focus, i forget things easily. So if i'm trying to focus on something and one of my kids says something to break my concentration i snap at them. I feel horrible!

 
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Old 10-22-2011, 12:56 AM   #2
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Smile Re: Problems focusing

Anxiety and/or depression can cause a lot of problems with focus and concentration.

I've suffered many of the same issues as you. Back in school I'd "space out" in class and not hear a word the teacher said and had a hard time absorbing what I read. Back then they didn't know much about ADHD so I never got tested or treated for it or anything. I've had anxiety/depression all my life but I noticed my concentration improved a lot while taking Zoloft. I think most of my problems are related to the anxiety and, yes, I have social anxiety too. I get really wigged out in social situations even though I don't want to be like that and I know it's not normal. I can't help it but, like I said, the Zoloft has helped.

I've heard of weight gain while taking antidepressants but it hasn't been a problem for me. In fact, I've lost about 10 lbs. since going back on Zoloft recently. Maybe you should try another SSRI. There are lots of them. I don't know if you've taken Benzos but they can help with anxiety. I took Xanax for a while but it didn't really help me that much after a while.

Don't feel bad. You have an illness that's not your fault. The good news is there is lots of treatment options available for it. Hope you can find one that works for you.

Good luck.

 
Old 10-22-2011, 04:48 PM   #3
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Re: Problems focusing

momof2, I have to agree with everything Frank said. I have had GAD and Panic Disorder for 25 years now, since I was about 14 years old. Back in 2002, When I finally had to start taking medication for it, I was put on Paxil. I took that for a year, and in that year I gained 60 pounds! My doc tried to tell me the same thing, "it's not from the medicine" BULL! It WAS the medicine! I stopped taking the Paxil and had horrible withdrawals from it too, even though I did wean off of it. Sorry for ranting, but I HATE that drug! Anyway, after I managed to lose only 20 of those pounds, I went on Zoloft. I have been taking Zoloft now, on and off, for the last 10 years (3 or 4 times). I have not gained ANY weight on it in all the times I had taken it, and withdrawing from it is not too bad either. I just recently started it again because I was diagnosed by my gyno with PMDD and perimenopause, he said that with my condition (the GAD & Panic Disorder) they were going to get 10 x's worse. And let me tell ya, he was NOT joking! After being off of any kind of med for 2 years, I had to start taking it again because my anxiety/panic was totally out of control. I have been taking it now for about 3 weeks, 1 week on 25 mg, then bumped up to 50 mg, where i'll stay. I do however take xanax with it to calm the start up side effects, but once i'm good with the zoloft, I will wean off of the xanax and take it as needed for any breakthrough, which I cannot see happening, because it never has before. I think this time i'll be on it for life, and that's fine, as long as I can feel "normal" again. Good luck with whatever you choose to do. Fox

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Old 10-24-2011, 04:46 AM   #4
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Re: Problems focusing

Thanks for your replies. I went and see a psychologist today and he thinks that its probably not ADHD and more likely GAD. So now i have to go back to my doctor and get a prescription for medication and hopefully they can find something that wont make me gain weight. Plus i'm going to see the psychologist to try and come up with some skills to help me keep the anxiety under control.

 
Old 10-24-2011, 04:51 AM   #5
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Re: Problems focusing

Please do yourself a favor and ask for xanax or something to help you through the initial side effects. It will help you greatly. Alot of times when you start an SSRI your anxiety gets worse in the beginning, but don't get discouraged, if you have this reaction it usually means that your condition will respond well to that med. Good luck with everything! Fox

 
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Old 10-24-2011, 10:09 PM   #6
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Re: Problems focusing

Hello,
I was just diagnosed with GAD in August. I tried several medicaitons- the Dr decided to lower my dose- I now take just 10mg of Fluoxetine (Prozac) I haven't experienced any weight gain to date. But I haven't really felt any benefit from it yet either- still waiting for magic here. I was too sensitive to the higher dosage of Buspar and Zoloft- ((((the Xanax really is magic though)))). I am a student and find that the Xanax actually helps me focus a little bit more- It slows my mind down I wanna say- I only take half of the 0.5mg though- I take half in the A.M. if needed and then half in the P.M. if needed (always on school nights Mondays). It does make you a little tired at first but I actually feel a benefit from this medication- It calms me down. I am looking for someone in my area to do so Yoga with. I heard that Yoga helps anxiety a lot. Never tried it though.

 
Old 11-08-2011, 11:42 PM   #7
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Re: Problems focusing

Finally went back to the doctor last Thursday and i was given prozac and clonazepam. I guess the clonazepam is supposed to calm me down till the prozac actually kicks in which he said could be 2 to 4 weeks. Anyway i feel like the clonazepam is just making me really tired. I'm only given .5mg and i have to take half of that in the morning, than half at lunch and then a full one before bed. I usually wake up feeling good but once i had that first half i'm ready to go back to bed.

Anyway i'm anxious for this prozac to kick in so i can stop this other med. And hopefully prozac doesnt cause we to gain weight.

But i do feel less anxious with the clonazepam, just tried and feel like i'm floating through the day and only half hearing what people are telling me. Its horrible but i'll take it over the nonstop worrying i guess.

 
Old 11-09-2011, 05:16 AM   #8
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Re: Problems focusing

In the beginning I lost weight on Prozac.After about 8 months I started gaining it though,so pay close attention to it.
The initial side effects made me nauseous so I couldn't really eat.But that wore off after a few months and then my appetite kicked in bigtime.

 
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