Adult Son Dx'd w/Cyclothymia
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Q:  Adult Son Dx'd w/Cyclothymia

My adult son has just been diagnosed with cyclothymia.  I have three questions....1. Is there a relationship between cyclothymia and ADD?  and 2. he is reluctant to start Lithium (or any meds) How can I best support him...without nagging? 3. Can you recommend literature that deals specifically with cyclothemia?

Thank you...this is a wonderful service for those of us new to this topic.

Dear Ms. C' -- 
1.  There is definitely a relationship between bipolar disorder and ADD.  Some people seem to have ADD symptoms for years then it switches, usually around puberty.  Sometimes people get better with treatment for the bipolar part alone -- the "ADD" seems to "go away" (maybe it was just part of the whole thing, seems like, in many folks).  

2.  Help him learn.  If you want a really serious education in answer to your question, read or at least skim "Motivational Interviewing".  Miller's book by that title may be easier reading, because it's all of a piece there, than this website they started to go with their courses.  But that's the approach I use all the time. 

3. There's so little out there, I wrote up a site on BPII variations, if you haven't been there yet.  

Dr. Phelps

Published November, 2001

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