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I am a 44 year old male and I am experiencing symptoms that are similar to those of Alzheimer's or other dementia or it may just be severe depression. I have trouble remembering new acquaintances and I am now uncomfortable in social situations which is so strange for me as I used to be very outgoing and friendly. I also feel somewhat disconnected in social situations and its as though I'm in a brain fog or not fully alert to what's going on around me. I also used to be able to write very well but that is no longer the case as I struggle now to find the right words. Even in conversation it seems like my vocabulary is more limited than it used to be and I often find I can't think of the right words.

I am now sleeping about 12 hours at night and several hours during the day as nothing seems to sustain my interest anymore. I get so bored that I just want to lay down and sleep. I should also mention that I take a high dose of Adderall twice daily for ADHD and I've read that long term use of stimulants can cause loss of pleasure over time.

I have suffered with depression since childhood and its gotten much worse over the years and I am now on strong doses of two antidepressants as well as a mood stabilizer. In addition I have been going through some extremely difficult and painful life experiences over the last five years with no relief in sight so that is surely not helping the way I feel.

I am also finding that I have trouble remembering things, not so much like appointments or important upcoming events, but I struggle to remember things I've just learned or read. I am terrible with names and often don't remember meeting certain people when I see them again.

I also have a long history of alcohol abuse as I used to drink excessively on a nightly basis for about 10 years although I was able to function and hold down a job during that time. I have been sober for 5 years now but I still wonder if all those years of alcohol abuse may be part of my problem.

I should also mention that my paternal grandmother had Alzheimer's in her later years so that is also causing me great concern.

Please reply if you have any helpful feedback. Thanks

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I can think of two things that can cause those same symptoms. Hypothyroidism and fibromyalgia. It would be a good idea to see a doctor and express these concerns with him/her.
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Congratulations on your five years of being sober. I suffered a bout of severe depression and was hospitalized for two weeks about 25 years ago. I still struggle with reading my emotions. I refer to the severe depression as the "big D" and to sadness as the "little d." Sometimes I can't tell the difference. I have read that it is not unusual to have recurring periods of depression after the Big D. I am in constant physical pain now waiting for a knee replacement. When I want to lie in bed and withdraw from normal activities, I feel depressed and there is always the fear that it might be the big D. I am also dealing with the possibility of my husband's beginning stage of dementia, too. He is 19 years older than I, and I am trying to educate myself about what he might be experiencing. So, I have a lot on my mind, as you obviously do. If you are taking that much medication and experiencing the symptoms you are, I advise you to see the doctor ASAP. As someone said earlier, side effects of your medication could be one of the many reasons for your problems. I certainly empathize with you, and my heart goes out to you. Please make a decision about seeing your doctor...and follow through with it. It is easy to isolate yourself and not even want to go to doctors' appointments. Keep us posted. There are many caring people here.
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I would get myself to whatever is currently prescribing your antidepressants and make a list of your symptoms beforehand. There are too many possibilities to list. If you get blown off by that md ( I don't think you will) seek a second opinion.
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P.S. I also meant to say that stress can cause almost everything you're experiencing...so consider that too.
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I'd also consider a second doctor's opinion of the medications you're on, if they're not helping you. A neurologist is probably a good choice, unless that's the kind of doc who is currently prescribing your anti-depressants. You have a lot of possible causes to your current memory/social/sleeping issues, so it's best to get a really good diagnostician to look at all of the things going on in your present and past history and get you the proper tests to figure out what is going on.

You could also have vitamin or mineral deficiencies. So get a good physical work-up as a starting place too. Good luck and please keep us posted on your progress.
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I'm a recovering alcoholic and I have a heck of a time with my memory even though I've been sober 18 years (I'm 46 years old).

Because you're already on medication it would be wise to get an appointment with your prescribing Dr. and tell him/her what you've told us. Your memory issues could be related to your medication.

Try not to worry too much until you've seen your Dr. A simple med adjustment may be all you need.
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I am not a doctor and I do not play one on TV. However I do have a master's in psychology. My thoughts are that you need to see a neurologist. Several things come to mind to me...

1. It could be depression, but since you are already under treatment and still getting worse, this seems unlikely - although I urge you to research different psychological problems such as social anxiety disorder, borderline personality disorder, or dissociative disorder because these matches your symptoms more closely and have different treatment plans than clinical depression
2. It could be that you sustained brain damage due to excessive drinking (there is a condition called alcohol induced dementia)
3. It could be early signs of parkinsons disease or huntingstons disease
4. It could be early onset alzheimers although I think this is very unlikely

A neurologist should be your first stop. Followed by a psychiatrist who has connections to your neurologist so they can share information. My list is not all encompassing its just my first thoughts based on your description.

Angel
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