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Buckeye Psychiatry, LLC (Dublin, Ohio), the psychiatric practice of Adam Brandemihl, M.D., Board Certified Psychiatrist, offers tips on how to keep your job while battling Adult ADD. He discusses ten ways of coping with adult ADD in the workplace.

Dublin, OH (PRWEB) March 8, 2009 — With the continued recession and struggling economy, keeping your job is a priority.  With increasing budget cuts, employee “productivity” has become more important to businesses.  The “P” word, or lack of it, is often used to determine which employees are fired or laid off.  Many newly unemployed Americans with adult ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) have been forced into jobs they would normally not accept in order to preserve their financial security.  Unfortunately, these jobs are often a poor fit for the employee’s strengths and can magnify their weaknesses.   Increased demands at current jobs can also “expose” some adults with ADD who were just getting by through extra effort and time. 

Dr Brandemihl has noticed an increasing number of adult ADD patients seeking medical treatment for the common disorder.  Dr Brandemihl notes that in the past, “many adults with ADD would have been able to find jobs that were a better fit for their unique skill sets. Ideally the patient wants to find a job that plays to their strengths such as the ability to multitask, think outside of the box and expend short bursts of intense energy.  However, with the poor economy many of these adult ADD sufferers have been forced into jobs that they are not suited for because of financial desperation.   The increasing job stress can lead to unhappiness, depression, anxiety, worsening productivity and ultimately, termination from the job.”

Dr Brandemihl says that the first step in treatment is “getting diagnosed by a mental health professional, preferably a board certified psychiatrist.”  Once the diagnosis of ADD is established, medication can be discussed as a possible option and behavioral changes that can help counter ADD can be implemented.  Dr Brandemihl offers the following tips for dealing with ADD in the workplace:

1. Make sure any additional psychiatric conditions are being addressed through therapy and/or medication.  Anxiety and depression can affect focus, concentration, motivation and energy, mimicking ADD.

2. Utilize an electronic planner or phone to keep a schedule and set alarms to remind you of appointment times, due dates, break times and meetings.

3. Set all of your clocks ten minutes ahead.  This way you are at least on time, if not early, for scheduled meetings.

4. Separate large assignments into smaller, more manageable assignments.  If possible, give yourself short breaks every fifteen to thirty minutes.  Use an egg timer or alarm to remind yourself of “break times” (even if they are only for one to two minutes).

5. Take care of yourself.  Get at least eight hours of sleep a night.  Eat several small meals a day and try to exercise at least thirty minutes per day.  This can make a huge difference in energy, motivation and concentration levels.

6. Make your work environment work for you.  You may consider an MP3 player or earplugs to block out noisy distractions.

7. Organize your work area.  Labels and folders are your friends.  Everything should have its own place.  Only have one assignment in front of you at a time.

8. Keep the momentum going at home.  Structure, routine and repetition are crucial.  Ask family members for help.  It is important to utilize and practice your new coping skills both before and after work.

9. Ask your supervisor or boss for feedback.  Tell him or her you are aware of the issue and ask for their opinions on your progress.

10. Reward yourself with a special treat for progress.  Positive reinforcement is crucial to help encourage any new behaviors.

Buckeye Psychiatry, LLC is located at 5060 Parkcenter Avenue, Suite F in Dublin, Ohio, just north of the Mall at Tuttle Crossing.  Psychiatric Appointments may be made by calling 614-766-5205 and are generally available within 1-2 weeks. Additional information can be found on Buckeye Psychiatry’s website at www.BuckeyePsych.com or blog at https://buckeyepsych.wordpress.com.

 

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Many clients have recently asked me how they can achieve their New Year’s resolution of improving their mental health in 2009.  With the stress of a struggling economy and growing demands from their jobs and families it can be quite difficult.   There are several things you can do on a daily basis to find that balance, but self awareness and prioritizing are key.   It’s important to learn to recognize your stressful feelings and emotions, so you can quickly find effective ways of dealing with and preventing them.

Stress may often trigger anxiety.  Anxious people often feel tense or on edge.  If people are anxious they may find themselves worrying excessively, not sleeping well, feeling distracted, and irritable.  Life stressors may also lead to symptoms of depression including sadness, crying spells, lack of pleasure in life, sleep and appetite disturbances, as well as feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness or even suicidal thoughts.

There are several things you can do proactively to prevent depression and anxiety from developing or worsening.  Some techniques are very easy to implement.

1.  Maintain a regular sleep schedule.  Going to bed at the same time and waking  up at the same time.  Avoid naps longer than thirty minutes as they may disrupt your nighttime sleep.

2.  Eat a healthy, balanced diet and get thirty minutes of cardiovascular exercise three times a week through something as simple as going for a walk.  The malls can be a good place to walk on cold, winter days.

3.  Journal or blog to have an outlet for your feelings or emotions.  You can even throw the paper away when you’re done writing if you are a private person.  The important part is getting it out.

4.  If you are unemployed (or even if you are not) find somewhere to volunteer between interviews and searching.  This helps your self esteem and also helps to maintain some structure and purpose in your life.

5.  Participate in religious or spiritual practices, preferably with others, to foster a sense of fellowship and hope.

6.  Communicate to your family and friends that you are feeling “sad”, “stressed” or “anxious” so they can reach out a helping hand.  If family or friends are not around consider a support group either online or in person.

7.  Refrain from drug and alcohol use as this can exacerbate or cause depression and anxiety.  Also avoid excessive amounts of caffeine as it can contribute to anxiety.

8.  Find a new hobby or interest.  Especially one that involves socialization to help foster new relationships.

9.  Adopt a pet (only if you are able to care for it).  Their unconditional love and daily needs provide reassurance and structure to your life.

10.  Consult a mental health professional when in doubt!  Meet with a psychiatrist and a therapist. 

It has become more common and socially acceptable to utilize mental health services. No matter how hard some people try to stay positive and be proactive they still may feel depressed and anxious.  Some folks are already suffering so much that they do not have the energy or motivation to help themselves.  These people may have a chemical imbalance that requires psychiatric medication, but only a physician and preferably a board certified psychiatrist can determine that.

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This is an interesting recent article from USA Today about how our economic woes are causing stress, depression and other problems, and that’s driving more people to seek help from mental health professionals.

I’ve found this to be true in my practice.

http://www.usatoday.com/news/health/2008-07-22-mental-health-finances_N.htm?csp=34

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