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I am a middle aged man diagnosed with ADD. I could use some on where to start with
Helping myself. I has been many frustrating years as well as becoming burned out. Any help would be appreciated


John Aiki 999's picture
John Aiki 999
Mar. 18, 2011 9:25 am


I am also a middle-aged ADDer. Though I was first diagnosed at age 5, and rediagnosed about 12 years ago, it;s still been a huge struggle for me. I am really feeling a lot of hopelessness, now being unemployed again after screwing up yet another job.

HOWEVER, there have been some things that have helped.

FInd a good psychiatrist (with good ADD experience) to prescribe and monitor any meds (stimulants, anti-depressants, etc.). Some regular physicians are willing to prescribe these, but I want to see someone who specializes in ADD.

Everything you can learn about lifestyle changes, skills for coping and compensating, are worthwhile. There are tons of books and online resources for these.

Support groups can be very helpful. Check with the CHADD website to find a local chapter. It's a huge boost to realize that you're not alone.

Various types of psychotherapy can also be very helpful. Folks in support groups are often great sources of info about who's good, what kinds of therapy worked for them, etc.

One of the BEST things I ever found is neurotherapy. This is EEG biofeedback where you learn to control computer games using your brainwaves, which enhances your brain functioning. Neurotherapy is usually provided by licensed, PhD-level psychologists and is becoming more widely available. However, as it is a relatively new treatment, it is not widely considered mainstream yet. But it promises to produce permanent improvements to brain functioning (versus temporary effects of medications). It is still not a CURE for ADD but it holds the most promise, I believe.

Figure out if you have any "comorbid" conditions, such as auditory processing disorder (which I have). These can be as significant as the ADD and there are treatments available. It's possible you don't have ADD, but some other disabilities that require a different approach. And you may need to pursue these on your own, unless you happen to find a good psychiatrist or psychologist who can help. In other words, they may correctly catch the ADD but not the auditory processing disorder. Or if they catch the APD as well, they only know how to treat the ADD. For example, treatment for APD is mostly found among audiologists, who do not always have many overlaps with psychiatry or psychology.

Be very careful about disclosing your ADD at work. Even with ADA protections, it can be as easily harmful as helpful. There's info about this on the internet, but it's a tricky subject. Toleration for learning disabilities is not at the same level as it is for physical disabilities.

daj100's picture
Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

you could try Dick sutphen dvds or cds or just down load his mp3s.he has a web site so you can have a look.
He does alot of selfhelp hypnosis stuff and they are really good, you have to keep using them over and over to benifit, it's like anything else the more you do it the better you are at it.
I have used them for 30 years and I have learnt to relax and focus my mind on different things,
I might do everything at warp speed but it's controlled and exact now,
Meditation has helped me alot as well
His stuff worked for me, I hope if you give it a try it will work for you.
Good luck

Apr. 12, 2012 10:58 pm

Hi John,

I'm a retired psychotherapist and I also have ADD. I'd like to rsuggest a book entitled, Driven to Distraction by Edward M. Hallowell, M.D. and John J. Ratey, M.D. This book is published by Simon and Schuster. These doctors both have ADD. Contact me after you've read the book and I'll be glad to offer assistance gratis. My e-mail is:


drmelvinredfern's picture
Sep. 20, 2012 6:51 am

Hi John,

I'm a retired psychotherapist and I also have ADD. I'd like to suggest that you buy the book, Driven to Distraction by Edward M. Halliowell, M.D. and John J. Ratey, M.D. Both of these doctors have ADD. I'll be happy to offer advice gratis after you have lread the book. My e-mail is: Take care.


drmelvinredfern's picture
Sep. 20, 2012 6:51 am

I am in the same boat ... 54, ADD, no job. I know Thom Hartmann has written several books on ADD, but I don't know which would be best for somebody like me. I can't really afford one book on ADD, never mind several by Thom or others trying to figure out which is right for me.

The book "Driven to Distraction" sounds familiar ... I've recorded (but of course not watched) a couple of PBS shows on ADD, one of them may have been based on that book (or one that sounds like it).

Jul. 7, 2011 11:13 am

I support your public appeal, mental health issues effect everyone, whether they are aware or not. I strongle believe my Dad is an ADD, and I have struggled w C-PTSD (after over 12 yrs of Bi-Polar mis diagnosis)

I find that many of these "abnornalities", be they ADD, Bi-Polar, Autism, share many biological-aka-bodily symptoms, such as hyper-sensitivity of "the senses"- sensitivity to bright light, sounds, the hand of a fabric, textures, sensitivity to patterns, shapes.

I also experience a few types of Synethesia .(!!!!!)

In my case, I narrowed the more "physical" symptoms down to Histamine Intollerance. Histamine intollerance, which is NOT the same as having "allergies" is facinating. Histamine (a hormone w/4 diff types-effects throughout the body from gut to organs including the brain) is a VERY overlooked very natural mechanism in our body's "immune" response, and the understanding is at this time is remedial and thus grossly underestimated and overlooked. Histamine plays an enormous role within the body AND the BRAIN. This is largely not well known or understood, however, (combine that w particularly "female" hormone cycles, ----oh boy, it's a doozie).

Histamine appears to be a significant but grossly underestimated and misunderstood hormonal process , it's symptoms when out of balance may "mimic" or actually be the source of any number of "mental illnesses"- ADD, Schizophenia, Autism, Bi-Polar, OCD. Research pending.(Synesthesia is not considered a mental "illness" but it's manifestation could be mis-diagnosed as symptoms of a variety of mental illnesses. Very little attention is paid to this hormone, histamine, and the significant role it plays as part of the body's immune response and overall function. All the focus on the ones we all know- seretonin, dopamine, oxytocin---but histamine, a workhorse hormone, is underrated and overlooked)

It also ties in w/Adrenal Fatigue theory, adrenals out of balance, which most main-stream med denies, yet they will prescribe Cymbalta, eg, to alleviate the symptoms for what they deny. I do believe however that science is getting on the right track w/all of the "micro-biome" (gut) study/support. And the concept of "holistic" medicine is beginning to take hold, much the way a veterinarian practices medicine...."Whole body"..includes the brain/mind.......

Curious to any drmelvinredfern ops ???? seriously, please, I'd be so gratefull for your input.

So sorry that the world has lost Dr.Oliver Sachs---too soon........but he was a man who faced so many challenges himself and his work has been and will continue to be/reveal the extra-ordinary.

peace to y'all figgiters, as a low-grade OCD and fellow figgiter of sorts, best wishes : ).......

Poor people are crazy, rich people are eccentric..............

in closing, you may want to read up on Histamine Intollerance, could be of use. One of the best websites for alot of info and links , search "The High Histamine Chef"........good luck, hope it helps



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