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Author Topic: Trouble concentrating when people talk to me  (Read 1636 times)

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Offline denrok

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Trouble concentrating when people talk to me
« on: February 03, 2014, 12:46:12 PM »
Hey all,

for as long as I can remember, I've really had trouble concentrating when people are talking to me. I remember in elementary school I was teased by my friends for being deaf because I just sometimes couldn't hear what them or other kids said to me. I've always had average hearing and never have been diagnosed with any sort of hearing problems. What makes it strange is that even to this day, it's not that I can't hear people, it's almost like they are speaking completely different language to me. Sometimes asking people to repeat their sentence two times isn't enough and at that point I usually just give up and try to laugh or say something neutral, but it can sometimes lead to awkward situations. When a person keeps talking to me more and more for the following days or weeks, I am actually able to listen to them more clearly, but it still sometimes happens when listening to my closest friends and co-workers.

I remember talking about this issue to my parents in high school but they just laughed and ignored it, thinking I was just making it up. The situation is now becoming unbearable because I have to attend meetings at work these days and at these meetings this issue really can get out of hand. I just can't concentrate during meetings and start thinking about other stuff, even though I know what currently being talked about is important and I should really listen. But I just can't and it again starts to sound like mumbling in my head. Then someone asks me a question and I just don't understand what the question was unless I try to concentrate really hard and usually I have to ask them to repeat the question. It's really becoming awkward and embarrassing!

In short, I have trouble hearing people as it sounds like a completely different language or mumbling in my head. At meetings I can't concentrate and it also sounds like mumbling to me.

What exactly is going on with this? Is it somekind of ADD? How should I get help for this issue?
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Offline gunmetaltrevan

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Re: Trouble concentrating when people talk to me
« Reply #1 on: February 04, 2014, 02:37:30 AM »
I was diagnosed with ADD (I have the MTHFR gene mutation which causes Autism and symptoms of Autism, ADD being one of them), and the issue you're describing is very similar to what I've experienced really all of my life.

From what I understand (now, I may very well be wrong...) your hearing should be perfectly fine -- are you able to really absorb yourself into music and perhaps even separate different tones/instruments very easily? Musical instruments' tones are processed by a different part of the brain than language, and part of your issue I believe is something as simple as having a weak spot in the area of the brain that processes language, so people's words are all going in, but not all of them make sense.

To go with that, with ADD you normally have to allocate a lot of your brain's bandwidth to one thing at a time, so if it's being used to do whatever you're doing/thinking about, the area that processes language would sort of be idling or dormant, causing you to not hear words you're not paying attention to.

Then again, there are other factors where someone with ADD is more aware of their surroundings, so they pick up little distant sounds or certain ticks in the room. This part kind of confuses me because you can completely ignore someone saying something due to not paying attention to it but still catch on to a click you also weren't paying attention to -- that may simply be a part of the brain's natural defense system, saying, "hey, look over there; that sound may have been from something dangerous," which is a common thinking pattern for someone with low serotonin levels or the MTHFR gene mutation.

Don't quote me on any of this until you've done a bit of research, because this is all stuff I heard from my doctor and therapist, BUT it may have morphed in my head and now be slightly inaccurate.

As for help... I was prescribed with Adderall, and I must say it really does help with actually listening to something someone has to say instead of hearing the first few words and thinking about how funny their voice sounded, then about their vocal cords, then singers, then Adelle, then modern Pop music, then how much money all these artists have, then what kind of cars they have, then how an engine works, then inventions that have changed life as we know it, then "what if we didn't have this?" then--whoops, were they saying something?

Anyway, you could see a doctor and get a prescribed dosage of Adderall, but be careful; it's the most abused drug in the country. A LOT of college students that don't even have ADD take it to give them an "intellectual edge," and many take it more than what's considered healthy for them. Just be careful if you decide to.

 Be SURE to see a doctor first and talk about it before just grabbing the medicine, again, IF you decide you want to take it.

I hope this may be of use to you, and good luck. :)
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