What causes unable to concentrate? 24 possible conditions

Viewing 1 - 20 of 24 results

Definition

Unable to concentrate is the inability to maintain attention and focus on a task or being easily distracted.

Alternative Names

Can’t concentrate, concentration difficulty, concentration impairment, difficulty concentrating, disturbed mental concentration, impaired concentration, inability to concentrate, inability to maintain attention, lack of concentration, lacks concentration, mental concentration difficulty, poor concentration.

Synopsis

The ability to concentrate is a function of mental status and cognition. Impairment of the ability to concentrate can be a problem of neurologic or psychiatric origin or a combination of behavior and mentation. The clinician will need to determine if poor concentration is a problem of recent onset or an established pattern of behavior.

Associated Diagnoses

  • Hunger
  • ADHD
  • Adjustment disorder
  • Alcohol related disorders
  • Acute stress disorder
  • Anxiety
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Concussion
  • Delirium
  • Dementia
  • Dysthymia
  • Insomnia
  • Lead poisoning
  • Major depression
  • Post concussion syndrome
  • Postpartum depression
  • Side effects of psychoactive medications
  • Hashimoto’s disease
  • Epilepsy
  • Fragile X Syndrome

Diagnosis and Treatment

Changes in the ability to concentrate should be evaluated by a physician and may require referral to a specialist (neurologist, psychiatrist, psychologist, behavioral therapist, pediatrician) for further diagnostic work-up and treatment. Diagnostic studies may include laboratory studies, brain scans and EEG. Treatment will depend on the underlying condition. Cognitive Development Intervention strategies may be implemented as part of Individual Family Service Plans (IFSP) and Individual Educational Plans (IEP) to enhance cognitive development. Medications, cognitive-behavioral strategies are possible treatment options, depending on the diagnosis.

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See a list of possible causes in order from the most common to the least.

1

ADHD Basics

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is a mental disorder that causes above-normal levels of hyperactive and disruptive behaviors. The cause is unknown but risk factors include genetic predisposition an...

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2

AIDS

There are many symptoms of the autoimmune disease HIV/AIDS, including persistent skin rashes, night sweats, and mouth sores.

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3

Concussion

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

A concussion is a mild traumatic brain injury. Usually it occurs after an impact to your head or after a whiplash-type injury. A concussion can cause many severe symptoms that affect brain function.

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4

Lead Poisoning

Lead poisoning occurs when lead builds up in the body. It is serious and sometimes fatal. Lead can be found in paint, art supplies, and other items. Poisoning may cause severe abdominal pain, seizures, and more.

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5

Acute Stress Disorder

In the weeks after a traumatic event, you may develop an anxiety disorder called acute stress disorder (ASD). ASD typically occurs within one month of a traumatic event. It lasts at least two days and up to one month...

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6

Post Concussion Syndrome

Post-concussion syndrome, or post-concussive syndrome (PCS), refers to the lingering symptoms following a concussion or a mild traumatic brain injury. Symptoms vary but include headache, dizziness, and depression.

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7

Dementia Overview

Dementia may affect memory, thinking, language, judgment, and behavior. Mental impairment must affect at least two brain functions to be considered dementia.

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8

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is an anxiety disorder that occurs after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event. PTSD can cause disruptive symptoms of panic, increased arousal, and mental/emotional problems.

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9

Nicotine Dependence

Nicotine addiction occurs when a person becomes addicted to nicotine, which is a chemical found in tobacco. The addiction is physical, mental, and behavioral.

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10

Sleeplessness

Sleeplessness, or insomnia, is a serious sleep disorder. It can mean the inability to fall asleep or stay asleep throughout the night, or the tendency to wake too early before having gotten enough sleep.

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11

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

People who suffer from generalized anxiety disorder, or GAD, worry uncontrollably about common occurrences and situations. The condition may also be called chronic anxiety neurosis.GAD is different than normal feeling...

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12

Delirium

This condition is considered a medical emergency. Urgent care may be required.

Delirium is an abrupt change in the brain that causes mental confusion and emotional disruption. It makes it difficult to think, remember, sleep, pay attention, and more. You might experience the condition durin...

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13

PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome)

Premenstrual syndrome (PMS) is a condition that affects a woman

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14

CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome)

Chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) is a debilitating disorder characterized by intense fatigue that cannot be cured with sleep. Mental and physical activities may cause symptoms to worsen. When fatigue cannot be linked to ...

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15

Multiple Sclerosis Overview

Multiple sclerosis (MS) is a chronic autoimmune disease that affects the central nervous system. MS can cause varying symptoms that appear with a wide range of severity, from mild discomfort to complete disability.

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16

Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder mental illness marked by extreme from mania to depression. Bipolar disorder is also called bipolar disease or manic depression.

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17

Migraine with Aura

Migraine is a disorder characterized by repeated attacks of severe headache. Symptoms include throbbing or pulsating pain, usually on only one side of the head, and can last between four hours and three days.

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18

Alcoholic Liver Disease

Damage to the liver from excessive drinking can lead to ALD. Years of alcohol abuse cause the liver to become inflamed and swollen. This damage can also cause scarring known as cirrhosis. Cirrhosis is the final stage o...

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19

Anxiety

What is anxiety? Anxiety often manifests itself as an apprehension about daily life. Learn the basics with this overview of the types of anxiety disorders.

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20

Dysthymia

Dysthymia is chronic depression with recurring symptoms of sadness and hopelessness lasting for several years. It is not characterized by acute depressive episodes but by an ongoing depressed feeling. Dysthymia is mos...

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This feature is for informational purposes only and should not be used to diagnose.
Please consult a healthcare professional if you have health concerns.
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