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20905809 tn?1612662005

Is there anyone who has been diagnosed with Executive Disfunction?

I was just diagnosed with having Executive Disfunction along with 5 other mental health disorders including BPD, PTSD, Severe Depression, Anxiety and OCD. My doctor wants to wait to treat this until I have safer housing and I am more stable.  Has anyone else suffered from this disorder and what treatments were used to help treat it, did they work or what might work?
1 Responses
973741 tn?1342342773
So, you are asking about the executive function?  I think of that as more something to work on. My son has an executive function delay.  It has nothing to do with intelligence, as you know.  Individuals with executive dysfunction struggle with planning, problem-solving, organization, and time management.  We worked with an occupational therapist to help with this.  This is the part of your system that 'helps you get things done" is how we think of it in our house.  There is organization EF and regulation EF.  Regulation EF is changing your response to what is going on around you (in my son's case, an example of his regulation issues are that once upset, he can't let something go or calm down easily).  Organization is gathering information and structuring it to understand it and organizing appropriate steps to respond.  

Things that help:
    Take a step-by-step approach to work.
    Rely on visual aids to get organized.
    Use tools like time organizers, computers, or watches with alarms.
    Make schedules, and look at them several times a day.
    Ask for written and oral instructions whenever possible.
    Plan for transition times and shifts in activities.
My son is big on lists and planning things out fully.

To improve time management:

    Create checklists, and estimate how long each task will take.
    Break long assignments into chunks, and assign time frames for completing each one.
    Use calendars to keep track of long-term assignments, due dates, chores, and activities.
    Write the due date on the top of each assignment.
*have an organizing calendar that you refer to multiple times a day.

My son has work areas for different things.  His school work area has all his 'tools' and he fights to cut down on clutter which can make organization worse.  He has a relax area and has the things he likes there too.  We came up with a system that ever 2 days, he looks at these two areas and cleans them up.  It takes about 5 minutes and he does it first thing from getting home from school.  Has made a habit of it.  

Do you have issues with flexible thinking? That's problematic for my son. And how is your impulse control?
5 Comments
WOW, I never knew anything about this stuff, yes I have really problems trying to regulate my emotions especially when I get upset, it takes me a long time to calm down.
Yes I have problems with flexible thinking, I am always told my thinking is very black and white. It's the same with my impulse control, I either do it or I don't.
I never used to have problems making decisions and organizing my day. Now it can take me up to 2 hours to just decide what I want to eat even though I am hungry the whole 2 hours.  I am really struggling with doing things I normally like to do. I think that I want to do them, but even if I am able to pick it up, it gets put right back down. Some of my video games I play on auto, so really the computer is playing for me. I  tell myself that okay, I am going to play for real, but it doesn't happen.
My doctor told me this is brought on by too much stress and my bad depression for more than a year.  Thank you for the detailed lists, this is something I am going to try.
This may not in fact be executive dysfunction.  It might be.  But it might also be that your depression is getting worse.  If you're on medication, it might be the medication.  If there have been changes in your life, it might be that.  This is especially a possibility because you say you never had this kind of problem before.  It's something to look at.
I am happy to help, LilMissBianca.  As I mentioned ,we worked with an occupational therapist for a good while with one thing being addressed of executive function difficulties.  Finding coping strategies for any areas that you have difficulty in is key.  So, you get a certain situation that happens you can't shake?  Have go to things you do to try to shift gears. Also seeing that your mood is headed somewhere, write down the signs and head it off before it gets to a point that is uncomfortable (upset or stressed).  My son goes for a walk, deep breaths, eats pizza bagels (yep, ?????), etc.  Try planning ahead of time in terms of what your day will look like including your food and what you'll eat and when.  This may cut down on feelings of indecisiveness at the moment.  
Hi Paxiled, my doctor thinks it might be medication as well, he does not want to touch anything yet until after I move and am settled and more stable. My current living situation has been a year of hell, I have been living in a rooming house which is located on the worst crime street in my city and I am living with alcoholics, drug addicts and violence.  This is all changing though as I am moving on March 1st into a real apartment in a building.  I hope things calm down with me quickly.
Oh gosh, yes!  I so hope that as well!!  In the mean time, use some of the strategies to help stay organized and help with the executive functioning issues you are experiencing no matter their origin.  March is almost here!!!  
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