Ask a Psychiatrist and Get Answers to Mental Health Questions ASAP
Good morning, Stephen. Thanks for writing to JA.
Congratulations on your apprenticeship. That's awesome!
What you're experiencing is not at all uncommon for individuals who have struggled with attention or school when they were kids. Please understand, as we proceed, that it would be inappropriate and unethical to diagnose over the internet (and across the Pacific Ocean), so I can't really comment on whether or not you have ADHD. I also can't really comment on your previous diagnosis - it might have been correct or incorrect!
What I *can* comment upon is that, unlike a cut-and-dry diagnosis like, "this patient has a broken arm," mental health diagnoses are more tricky. A Licensed Mental Health Professional (LMHP) (Psychiatrist or Psychologist) would look at your symptoms but also look at symptoms you DON'T have, as well as address your presenting from a developmental perspective (meaning they would take into account your behavior, thoughts, feelings from when you were a kid up until now). Several LMHP could look at you and come up with the same diagnosis (e.g., ADHD) or several slightly-different diagnoses, depending upon what was told to them, your age, reports from other people, diagnostic records and clinical assessments. This doesn't mean they're wrong - it just means that it's complex!
All this is to say - I think it's time to go back to your doctor and ask to be referred to a LMHP (Psychiatrist/Psychologist). The Psychiatrist can provide you with medication (as can your regular doctor) and typically conducts a clinical history and interview to come up with a diagnosis. A Psychologist doesn't prescribe medication, but typically conducts an extensive diagnostic workup (using standardized assessments) to better understand your symptoms - and then comes up with a diagnosis. If either LMHP felt you needed medication - they would refer you to the right professional. If either LMHP felt you needed some therapy - they would also refer you.
Point is, you might still have ADHD, or you might not. A young man at age 22 is very different, developmentally, from an early adolescent at age 12. The appropriate LMHP will help sort out all of your history with your current presentation and give you an appropriate (and current) diagnosis. From that diagnosis, a treatment plan (which may or may not include medication) would be developed.
Congrats again on your apprenticeship! I hope it continues to go well.
I hope this was helpful. Thanks.
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