Concentration difficulties – Symptoms, causes and treatment

Concentration difficulties can have negative consequences both in private and in business. There are several different causes of concentration difficulties, but it is often possible to alleviate and treat the problems.

Characteristic of concentration difficulties as medical symptom is that one experiences impressions that do not disturb others as disturbing. It can have negative effects on social interaction, as it can be difficult to capture and sort impressions. You may need to ask people to repeat themselves to understand what they mean. Misunderstandings can arise and you can be perceived as uninterested, despite doing your best to understand the surroundings.

Problems with interaction

Concentration difficulties are often discovered when you start school, as the demands for interaction and performance increase. As requirements increase, it can be difficult to keep up. The underlying causes may not always be something that requires help from the healthcare system, but it can be good to learn about the signs of diagnoses such as ADHD and depression. For some, the problems disappear or become manageable over time. Others may need help to make it easier to handle everyday life.

Symptoms and signs

Concentration difficulties can appear in many ways. One of the most common is that it is difficult to filter out expressions and focus on an activity. Sound and light from the surroundings can make it difficult, for example, to work, study, read or listen. It can also be that negative thoughts and anxiety make it difficult to concentrate on the present.
Planning, structure and memory can be suffering. You can become forgetful and need to put more energy into the memory of things that are usually part of everyday routine. Tasks are left half-finished and details “fall out of the brain” because you have so many thoughts that go around in your head and pay attention.

Causes of concentration difficulties

Concentration difficulties can arise from both mental and physical causes. The most common is that it occurs for some chronic or temporary mental cause. It can also be a result of trauma to the head. Concentration difficulties are most often seen in children and adolescents. It can be a temporary mental illness or part of a chronic diagnosis. Some common causes of concentration difficulties are:

  • Stress and fatigue syndrome
  • Different types of depression and anxiety syndrome
  • Autism, ADHD and other neuropsychiatric diagnoses
  • Concussion and other types of trauma to the head

Treatment of concentration difficulties

The treatment methods for concentration difficulties depend on the underlying cause. In neuropsychiatric diagnoses such as ADHD, medication can be tested to see if it helps with the symptoms. Psychotherapy and adaptation of the situation at school or at work can also help with the difficulties. A person who has difficulty concentrating often needs to find routines and functioning systems that give structure and place lower demands on concentration ability.

Treatment of stress and fatigue syndrome may consist of sick leave, psychotherapy and drug treatment. If the concentration difficulties are linked to fatigue, the ability to concentrate usually recovers as the fatigue syndrome improves. It is important to be aware of symptoms, such as difficulty concentrating, as early as possible and taking action. As the symptoms get stronger, they also often take longer to recover from.

If the concentration difficulties have occurred after head trauma such as concussion, you often need to rest for a period of time to slowly increase their activity. In the event of a concussion or a severe blow to the head, care should be sought directly at a medical center or emergency room. If you have had a head trauma that leads to headaches, dizziness, nausea or concentration difficulties, you should contact a health care center.

When should you seek care?

In many cases, concentration difficulties are somewhat transient that do not require care. You should contact a health care center if the concentration difficulties are so difficult that it becomes difficult to cope with everyday life. There is help to get that can make it easier to cope with studies and work. If the person suffering from the concentration difficulties is young, you can contact the child care center (under six years), the school health care or the youth reception.

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