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I cant afford offical testing for ADHD/ADD

Both of my children have been diagnosed with ADHD/ADD and are taking meds and counseling and I have seen quick positive results. I have been taking Wellbutrin and Guafacine at night. I have a panic/aniexty disorder, PTSD, and depression. I take the I have noticed a small difference, however I still suffer with not being able to stay focused, racing thoughts, staying organized. It takes a lot of self discipline to stay on daily task. I cant keep a job longer than six months because of my lack of attention span and getting bored. All it takes is one day of falling out of my routine and it can ruin everything I worked for. I want to be properly diagnosed and I cant afford to see a doctor. Let alone pay for the official testing without insurance. What do I do?


Well you could try what I did. I went online and took 3 different ADHD quizzes, printed out the results and brought them to my primary care provider.  I am older 49 so I knew myself pretty well at this point.  My PCP had been treating me for depression for a year with medication with a little improvement.

He agreed with my diagnosis and said I should try Ritalin.  He said it would either have a profound effect or none at all as I was already going 100 miles per hour with my non-stop motor inside.

I lucked out as Ritalin was perfect for me and cleared up my symptoms immediately.

Ritalin may not be the right medication for you, but I would recommend starting with your PCP with homework in hand.


Posted by Mitzi Maine on May 16, 2014 at 2:36am

Agree with Mitzi!  As an adult you may not need any kind of “expensive testing” at all.  An in depth clinical interview is often all it takes to establish the diagnosis.

On the other hand, there are some real stick-in-the-mud types who will argue that you need to bring in old school transcripts to prove to them that you’ve really had it since you were a child and you aren’t some drug-seeking adult who just wants “more energy.”  If you run into a stick-in-the-mud just change PCPs and try again. 

Hopefully, you’ll just be pleasantly surprised with your current PCP—and when you start some meds you can post on here about that and you’ll find plenty of extra help finding your way through that potential maze.

Posted by BC on May 16, 2014 at 6:54am

Wellbutrin and guanfacine is not what I would consider a great recipe for success.  So don’t feel discouraged if that combo is not working out too well.  If you’re taking Guanfacine & Wellbutrin then somebody is already giving you meds that are not “commonly” prescribed for anything but ADHD usually.  Is the person prescribing them reluctant to give you the best meds for ADHD (stimulants)—so that’s why you are thinking you need some “expensive testing”?

Posted by BC on May 16, 2014 at 7:00am

Wellbutrin (Buproprion) is an anti-depressant, not a primary ADHD medication, though it is sometimes used.  ADHD is genetic, and the fact that you have two diagnosed kids with it makes is much more likely that you do as well, which means your regular doctor may be willing to diagnose and prescribe.

Posted by Cedar on May 16, 2014 at 9:10am

While testing is not required to diagnose ADHD, given your background of various other diagnoses, you can expect a diagnostic interview to be a bit more lengthy.  Testing will not tell anyone what diagnosis contributes to your symptoms.  If you already have a diagnosis of PTSD , anxiety and depression you are likely to look ADHD on any test.  I would also suggest that rather than getting a diagnosis to get medication, that you work with a holistic practitioner who can also help you address how sleep, diet, and exercise can improve your symptoms.

Posted by Drkwood on May 18, 2014 at 4:50am

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