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Adult ADHD and Bi-polar????
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tara6684 posted:
I have never used WebMD before so I don't know exactly how this works, but I have a questions for anyone who can give me any answers. I have recently been diagnosed with adult ADHD and about 12 years ago I was diagnosed with bi-polar. My question is what is the difference between these 2 disorders??? Being diagnosed with bi-polar so long ago I completely understand it, but the ADHD part of things I do not understand. I am seeing a new doctor and she truly believe's that this is what I have, but how can anyone even a doctor be sure???? Please anyone with ANY answers I would greatly appreciate the help thank you ahead of time!!!!
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dogg2 responded:
Tara, from what i understand, bipolar is in phases, one extreme point as opposed to another it could be several weeks, months, even year(s) apart-! ADHD is always going on!!! the two can be confused for the other depending on what phase of bipolar you're in. if you're overly exuberant & hyped up, then anyone will say you're ADHD; if opposite end of spectrum of bipolar, they will say you're depressed or ADD (inattentive, non-focusing, but no hyperactivity).

however, the two can also be taking you for a ride concurrently; you can have both symptoms or mental issues (and others) at the same time, too. it will take very careful examination & diagnosis to confirm or deny this. be careful & i hope things work out & you get the help you need, Tara. hope i helped a little...
 
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thebeefman replied to thebeefman's response:
BTW. ADD drugs worked for me and I am now working with my dr. to get off them. There is a very good book to help you cope with ADD.

You Mean I'm Not Lazy, Stupid or Crazy?!
by Kate Kelly
 
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GyspieMom responded:
I have both, Bio-polar and ADHD. I was told that I was Bio-polar 10 years before I knew about ADHD. I feel as if they run hand in hand. To me it feels as if the ADHD; makes it harder for me to stay on topic; as the Bio-polar makes the normal bad days very bad day. That is if I do not take my meds. I always take them and I will say one thing over time you will be able to see the effects of each disorder. If you ever need someone to talk with just email me.
Gyspie Mom
 
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thebeefman replied to GyspieMom's response:
In my case I do not beleive I have both, as I don't have the drastic mood swings I have seen in the support groups and clinics I have been in. Some dr.'s still say I do, others say I don't, stating that behaviors I have learned to cope with untreated ADD makes me conjure in my mind that things are worse then they are, which in turn makes a bad day worse than it should be. I am always looking at the negative and assuming that is what is going to happen, instead of living in the present and not worrying about what is going to happen until I need to. This is just a coping mechanism I have developed. Being treated for ADD has helped me changed that substantially. I know realize the power of now. (Eckhart Tolle's book a New Earth is a Very Good One for that). He did some webcasts where he went over the book chapter by chapter with Ophrah that helped me as well.
 
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Gina Pera responded:
Indeed, there is much confusion about the difference between bi-polar disorder and ADHD - and much of the confusion is created by diagnosing professionals.

Tara has received some very helpful responses from this generous community.

I would just like to correct one misconception, because it is commonly held:

"The main symptom of ADHD is a disturbance in attention. The main symptom of bipolar disorder is a disturbance in mood or mood swings."

Actually, the main "symptom" of ADHD is dysregulation, and that dysregulation can manifest in uneven ability to direct attention as well as mood. Being quick to over-react with anger and then quick to over-react to happy news with outsized exuberance is quite common with ADHD -- and one of the reasons it's sometimes mistaken for bi-polar.

The key difference here, some experts say, is that people with ADHD are reacting to an outside event whereas the person with bi-polar's mood swings might spring from internal biochemical fluctuations (that is, not triggered by a specific event).

Overall, the best way to ensure that you receive the proper diagnosis is to educate yourself by reading several solid books on ADHD and bi-polar. That way, you will be able to better judge the knowledge level of any clinician whose help you seek.

I hope this helps,
Gina Pera
 
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tara6684 replied to Gina Pera's response:
Wow I realize I wrote this post a very long time ago, but I just need to say thank you for what you wrote. The key differences that you wrote about truly makes sense to me. This is the first time that I've actually understood the difference between the two. I'm definitely going to have to rethink everything I thought about my bi-polar. Thank you Ms.Pera


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