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official thread on brain type 8 according to dr. Daniel Amen

dr daniel amen spect brain scan brain types adhd atypical depression bpd asd ocd

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#1 jack black

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Posted 06 June 2019 - 03:09 AM


I'm starting this official thread on brain type 8 according to the classification by dr. Daniel Amen.  If you're unaware what brain type you have according to dr. Amen, it could be very easily checked for free using this questionnaire: https://brainhealthassessment.com/

 
If you are not familiar with dr Amen, he's the psychiatrist who started using SPECT brain scans to diagnose and classify mental diseases, way back in early 90's before psychiatry/psychology started using functional brain scans in research that is happening right now. Back then, the dogma was that no brain abnormalities can be detected by any brain scans in people with psychological disorders and thus, he was labeled by traditional psychiatry as a quack for using brain scans instead of questionnaires like everybody else. Interestingly, dr Amen went back full circle when he realized that some of the patterns of functional brain abnormalities can be predicted by using questionnaires. But unlike traditional psychiatry, he checks for specific brain types that he identified by functional brain scans.
 
Let me talk a little bit about myself. There's a history of specific psychological problems in some members of my family. I can identify it in at least 3 generations. Clearly appears to be hereditary. While the symptoms are not exactly disabling or psychotic, they are mostly emotional in nature and interfere with learning, work, social life, and especially well-being/happiness.  The disorder cannot be easily classified using the existing psychological or psychiatry tests. For example, I can take any different tests and appear to test positive for either: attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, autism spectrum disorder, depression, anxiety, social phobia, obsessive compulsive disorder, etc. Fortunately, there is no schizoid type of symptoms.  At the same time, I cannot clearly have all of these disorders or I would be severely incapacitated. My impairment is fairly mild and I function fairly successfully in my professional life and family life, but not without major quirks and limitations. My social life is only so-so.  The emotional symptoms seem to be stronger in female members of my family (majority of affected people). There's probably negative influence of female hormones on emotions.
 
Over the years, since childhood, I used different techniques to self soothe and stabilize my emotions such as stoicism, avoiding stress, overeating, drinking, positive thinking, visualization, relaxation, etc; but unfortunately, that is not enough and from time to time I would have periods of burnouts and atypical depressions characterized by overeating, oversleeping, and low energy.  Various members of my family have seen repeatedly psychologists and psychiatrists and never received a firm diagnosis and only labels such as depression, adjustment disorder, or neuroticism. Treatments with various antidepressants had only mild improvement short term with little improvements long-term or even negative results. 
 
I went through different phases of my gaining insights into my issues over the years, considering at different times that I may have either ADHD, borderline personality, or mild autism (Asperger's). In the last year, events surfaced that made me consider unusual form of rapid cycling bipolar disorder-2 with phases of rare hypomania and common depressions triggered by specific triggers. Cyclothymia is another possibility.
 
Doing the brain assessment according to Dr Amen was a very positive thing and the insights provided by the results gave me explanation of my problems that finely made sense. See parts of my evaluation:
 

 

The SPECT scans for Brain Type 8 typically show lower activity in the front part of the brain, in an area called the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Think of the PFC as the brain’s brake. It stops us from saying or doing things that are not in our best interest, but it can also stop creative, out-of-the-box thinking if it works too hard. The PFC is the little voice in our heads that helps us decide between the banana and the banana split. Brain Type 8 may be associated with lower dopamine levels (a neurotransmitter involved with focus and motivation) in the brain and may cause people to be more restless, risk-taking, and needing to be very interested in order to stay focused. People with this type may need excitement or stimulation in order to focus (think of firefighters and race car drivers).
In addition, people with Brain Type 8 are often take-charge people who won’t take no for an answer. They tend to be strong-willed, tenacious, and sometimes stubborn. They may also worry, have trouble sleeping, and like things to be a certain way. Brain Type 8 often has increased activity in an area called the anterior cingulate gyrus (ACG), also located in the front part of the brain.
We think of the ACG as the brain’s gear shifter. It helps people go from thought to thought or move from action to action. It is involved with being mentally flexible and going with the flow. When the ACG is overactive, usually due to low levels of serotonin, people can have problems shifting attention, which can make them persist, even when it may not be a good idea for them to do so.
Brain Type 8 also tends to show increased activity in the limbic or emotional centers of the brain, making them sensitive, empathic, and deeply feeling, but also subject to issues with moods. They may struggle with being more pessimistic and having negative thoughts.
In addition, Brain Type 8 also shows heightened activity in the anxiety centers of the brain, such as the basal ganglia, insular cortex, or amygdala. This is often due to lower levels of the neurotransmitter GABA, which helps calm the brain. People with this type tend to be motivated toward a goal. They can feel intense pleasure, but also struggle with feeling anxious or nervous, which causes them to be more cautious and reserved, although more prepared

 

The description is spot on. The recommendations for supplements that follows is a BS to push people to buy supplements and programs his clinics offer. Some of those supplements did work for me when tried them before learning about brain type 8, but never in a strong way.
 
The fascinating part is the parallels between what Amen calls brain type 8 and what currently literature shows in cases of a borderline personality disorder based on functional brain scans, where there is evidence of hypoactive prefrontal cortex and hyperactive amygdala. Now, my clinical picture is not exactly that of borderline personality disorder but fairly close, and we do have evidence that what is clinically described as borderline personality disorder is a mixture of different things which can overlap and be confused with other conditions. There is an interesting overlap between borderline personality and bipolar, which is especially relevant to myself. Bipolar is also known to have thin prefrontal cortex. That also explains the theme of attention deficit being prominently featured in my problems and my family's, too.
 
Now, this is what I found very helpful in my condition as well as some of my family members found helpful too:
1. Healthy lifestyle with plenty of good quality sleep during regular hours with ideally going to bed early and waking up early (no alcohol or eating before bed).
2. Regular meals throughout the day with emphasis on meals in the morning and less in the evening. Vegetable-based diet, especially containing legumes that seem to be have calming effect. 
3. Removing foods from the diet that we are allergic to. In my situation, milk, eggs, and gluten. Removing excessive amounts of sugar, proteins, or fat from the diet.
4. Limiting coffee and replacing with green tea.
5. Relaxation, meditation, and mindfulness techniques.
6. Good and peaceful relationships with friends, significant others, and/or lovers.
7. Mild to moderate intensity exercise one or twice a day. Strenuous exercise actually makes me feel much worse. 
8. High dose vitamin B complex including inositol. Vitamin D, if one is vitamin D deficient. 
9. From other supplements, I find very useful agmatine and ashwagandha. Both of those are calming in different ways. I take DMAE only on work days for ADHD type of symptoms. I take/took a variety of different supplements that helped slightly or temporarily, but I'll skip them right now.
10. From various medications, the most helpful are mood stabilizers such as low dose lithium or low dose Lamictal or both. Propranolol taken before stressful situations that are known to cause anxiety. 
11. Low dose SSRI or low dose cymbalta only on days when emotion are trying to take me over (romantic love is a tricky beast).
12. The few times i took low dose legal amphetamines, it was a great improvement in everything, but i'm afraid to take it more than once or twice. None of the other ADHD treatment ever worked well for me.
 
If you are also a type 8 brain or see similarity to my story, please tell us your story and let me know what else helps you.
 
Hopefully, a couple of you will find this helpful.
 
Good luck to you all!

Edited by jack black, 06 June 2019 - 03:20 AM.

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#2 YoungSchizo

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Posted 06 June 2019 - 08:52 AM

Brain type 7

I remember doing this test from many many years ago. Only if I could remember which brain type I had then...

The scores are also influenced by the part "how you've been lately", it's best to take this test before and intermittently and see again how you score after you change your diet/regimen.
Because that part is like some sort of PANSS (Positive and Negative Symptom Scale for schizophrenia or other standard measurements if you suffer from depression or whatnot) which are taken when before, intermittently and at the end if you take part of a clinical trial.


Edited by YoungSchizo, 06 June 2019 - 09:39 AM.

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#3 pamojja

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Posted 06 June 2019 - 11:05 AM

 The recommendations for supplements that follows is a BS to push people to buy supplements and programs his clinics offer.

 

Type 1. Certainly inconsistent in attesting best brain health, but still thinking that easily fooled to take a Multi (including omega 3) for $100,- a month, which can be had at a fraction of that price.


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#4 Oakman

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Posted 06 June 2019 - 02:34 PM

Type 1 - Guess I can't contribute here. Interesting anyway.


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#5 jack black

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Posted 06 June 2019 - 04:11 PM

@pamojja @oakman

good for you guys! #1 is the perfectly normal brain (i hear).


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#6 jack black

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Posted 06 June 2019 - 04:14 PM

Brain type 7
 

 

does the description match your problems? i don't know anything about type #7. i tested my family and they came back as ether type #1 or #8. a close friend of mine has type #9.

 

edit: i just took it again and came back with the same type, maybe the fitness score is lower. the previous test was about a year ago and i was more upbeat then right now (relationships!).

 

BTW, this is the summary of the type 8. i forgot to mention it in my first post:

 

 

People with this type tend to be:

  • Be spontaneous
  • Be creative, “out-of-the-box” thinkers
  • Focus only if something is interesting
  • Be persistent
  • Get stuck on thoughts
  • Be deeply feeling
  • Struggle with moods
  • Be motivated
  • Be restless

 


Edited by jack black, 06 June 2019 - 04:25 PM.

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#7 YoungSchizo

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 09:21 AM

does the description match your problems? i don't know anything about type #7. i tested my family and they came back as ether type #1 or #8. a close friend of mine has type #9.

 

edit: i just took it again and came back with the same type, maybe the fitness score is lower. the previous test was about a year ago and i was more upbeat then right now (relationships!).

 

BTW, this is the summary of the type 8. i forgot to mention it in my first post:

 

Lol, yesterday I skipped reading if the report matches my mental health and didn't looked at the video and deleted their e-mail. I've tried to recover the e-mail but couldn't find it so today I took the test again and this time it says brain type 8  :|?

 

After this I've got back to my mail-box again and tried to recover my report from yesterday again, and with succes. But when I click on it, it says brain type 7 but with the report of brain type 8.. I probably had to use another e-mail when taking it again today... shit happens...

 

As I already said yesterday, the part: "How have you've been feeling lately" can change the outcome of the test. Guess I felt a little better or shittier yesterday than today (yesterday I entered my name as Jimmy but today I said my name was Tom :-D ), dunno but what I do know is that I've pretty much entered the overall questions the same as yesterday. If you're having (serious) mood fluctuations (like with schizo-affective or any other mood-disorder) this can also happen when you're in a official clinical trial, score 1 or 2 points up/down on the day of the interview. Therefore, someone with a mood-disorder should probably first have to change their diet/regimen/lifestyle/drugs and take this test intermittently.  

 

 


Edited by YoungSchizo, 07 June 2019 - 09:45 AM.

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#8 DrewMichael21

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Posted 07 June 2019 - 10:45 PM

1. Dr.Amen is just a salesman and nothing more, Oh I'm sorry if I told you like it is..As for me I need to reevaluate my life at this point..ADHD is a fucker that's for sure.


Edited by DrewMichael21, 07 June 2019 - 10:47 PM.

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#9 jack black

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Posted 08 June 2019 - 04:22 AM

DrewMichael, i left your thread alone and please do likewise here.


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#10 whiteelephant

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Posted 10 June 2019 - 01:25 AM

While I don't disagree that Amen is a salesman and don't fully buy into his validity, I do identify with the utility of the typing.  I'm type 8.  I have a mix of anxiety, mood and ADD/executive function issues.  I've spent years trying medication, therapy, supplements.  Nothing really helps enough in the long term.  Right now, I make mistakes frequently/unpredictably since I don't always pull things in based on previous knowledge.  Then I beat myself up and judge my competence.  I struggle at developing a fuller life and maintaining relationships as I've just struggled with basically getting my professional life and basic things square away.  My VIQ is much higher than my PIQ--no official lD diagnosis.  I can't keep to skills/and just recycle the same life issues.  

 

Currently on Strattera 40 mg (CYP2D6 poor metabolizer), get tearful and emotional on it, don't know if going up would help more

Memantine--7 mg, just started.  

Previously:

Strattera-helps with sustained attention

Intuniv-Seems to help slightly, but not significantly. 

Prozac--unique SSRI to help with mood issues.  I don't get as caught up in the negativity, it is still there.  Other SSRIs didn't do as much.

Tegretol--on its own prevented the emotional reactivity, but too dulling. 

 

Other than that, been on many other medications and no significant result.  Sort of stuck at how/if I'll ever be able to overcome my limitations.  The combined mood and attention issues have limited my potential.  Think I may just have to accept mediocrity. 

 



#11 DrewMichael21

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Posted 10 June 2019 - 02:24 AM

While I don't disagree that Amen is a salesman and don't fully buy into his validity, I do identify with the utility of the typing.  I'm type 8.  I have a mix of anxiety, mood and ADD/executive function issues.  I've spent years trying medication, therapy, supplements.  Nothing really helps enough in the long term.  Right now, I make mistakes frequently/unpredictably since I don't always pull things in based on previous knowledge.  Then I beat myself up and judge my competence.  I struggle at developing a fuller life and maintaining relationships as I've just struggled with basically getting my professional life and basic things square away.  My VIQ is much higher than my PIQ--no official lD diagnosis.  I can't keep to skills/and just recycle the same life issues.  

 

Currently on Strattera 40 mg (CYP2D6 poor metabolizer), get tearful and emotional on it, don't know if going up would help more

Memantine--7 mg, just started.  

Previously:

Strattera-helps with sustained attention

Intuniv-Seems to help slightly, but not significantly. 

Prozac--unique SSRI to help with mood issues.  I don't get as caught up in the negativity, it is still there.  Other SSRIs didn't do as much.

Tegretol--on its own prevented the emotional reactivity, but too dulling. 

 

Other than that, been on many other medications and no significant result.  Sort of stuck at how/if I'll ever be able to overcome my limitations.  The combined mood and attention issues have limited my potential.  Think I may just have to accept mediocrity. 

 

1. Don't give up just yet your in the same situation that I am in and I see where you are coming from.. I've had these thoughts but my life was so shit before that I think I'll just end my life before that ever happens... You've  been through alot of different medications and as you have demonstrated the limitations of pschotropic treatments but you should still permanently medicate yourself to maintain a higher quality of life...I don't enjoy being a zombie I really really don't  but it's not over yet...Check into Barkleys 17 hours of lecture which I will be going through... every fucking video until I find an answer and will be making a youtube channel purely dedicated to this fucking cancer..Despite what the naysayers say there must be a way out...Here's a quote from a guy with ADHD and he's a multi-millionaire he just responded to me... This dude has managed to be successful and I'm attempting to find out this fuckers secret... If their are people with ADHD who are vastly successful than we can be to.. Don't accept mediocrity dude or the ADHD has won. It's funny that I've garnered so much hate even though I've more things than most have done in there whole lives lmao... Anyways, I sympathize with you those neurotypicals are bloody cheaters...I get tired even after a 30 hour shift...Yes, you've raised a good point about SHOWING what you know this is called EXECUTIVE Functions and it's why your potential is limited because your INCAPABLE of doing your actions.. I have written the most comprehensive thread on ADHD to date....Do not give up..I will find an answer for this curse to help you and I. If not then I'll just end it.  We have evidence of ADHD people BEING SUCCESSFUL, so we can be to... I suspect you have ADHD-PI which is much harder to treat.

 
       "Drew... it's not your ADHD.
Stop blaming ADHD. Pretend like you don't have it and get your shit together.
 
No one is going to save you but you."-John Sonomez.
 
2. Do not fall for this crap reasoning john is giving because, it requires Executive abilities to show what you know and this is the whole problem..I've thought of accepting it as well but it seems pretty dumb to be frank with you..I will continue searching for answers even if you give up. I will not...One way or another their must be a way..I'm surprised it doesn't anger you that those neuromonkeys get to live the life you and I don't get to live? Doesn't that fucking anger you? Don't be a victim dude..or your done for. If I could just somehow, find a way to harness those neurotypicals ability to sustain focus we would be free....Anyone who figures this out would win a nobel prize... I'm simply not smart enough. It's frustrating because this is OUR only life and it's being wasted amassing useless information... I will continue grinding towards the ADHD stone even if it's futile... That is all.
  
              P.S If it helps, I've noticed that not eating at all seems to improve my cognitive capacity significantly it's even funny..I'm experimenting with eating 2 times a day and no small meals for the rest of the day. When I do this, it's like my cognitive capacity goes into the shithole and my focus is gone for the rest of the evening. If I had enough money, I'd make a very specialized ADHD-PI diet.. Granted thoughts are still running through my head but I can actually FOCUS on a task and I don't get awful backpain or anxiety... I suspect there is something in the food...I don't know what it is.. Also, although I don't agree with Jack, most of the conclusions he speaks I've basically arrived to as well..Chemical stimulants are not sustainable... Check into diet it seems to have something to do with focus.. Also pornography addiction could effect focus but did nothing for me.. That is all...

 


Edited by DrewMichael21, 10 June 2019 - 02:47 AM.

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#12 jack black

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Posted 10 June 2019 - 02:36 PM

whiteelephant, i sympathize with you. from what i know (from Dr Amen, BTW), serotonin and dopamine antagonize each other. so, when i take pure dopamine stimulants for ADHD (like concerta), they mess up my emotions. SSRI type of drugs make me feel good, but motivation plunges. I had better effect with cymbalta that is mixed SNRI, but i'm afraid to take it long term as it forms addictions and sexual side effects. amphetamines also work better by releasing multiple neurotransmitters, but IMHO, it's not long term solution either. i keep experimenting. if i found a breakthrough, i'll let you know.

 

BTW, i also plan to try memantine again. previously i used low dose only and some other things at the same time and it was inconclusive.


Edited by jack black, 10 June 2019 - 02:37 PM.

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#13 Dichotohmy

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Posted 10 June 2019 - 04:07 PM

oLu9eIg.png

 

Looks like I scored type-2 again.

 

I took the test about 18 months ago and scored almost the same in all metrics.

 

Like every other subjective questionnaire, this one seems to be heavily weighed by certain questions. Because many of the questions are ambiguous or the questions aren't asking the right things (in my case), I do pretty good in categories I would not consider so good in my life.  More specifically, by sleep is probably more like a 2, because the quality and feeling of restoration after sleep are both poor, but I probably score highly in the sleep column because I can honestly answer that I only rarely have problems falling or staying asleep. HPAA dysfunction is correlated with some psychiatric disorders, and pathologies which cause HPAA dysfunction are sometimes comorbid with psychiatric disorders, yet I recall zero questions directly relating to HPAA function. Even with dysautonomia heavily affecting my quality of life, I still managed to score a "7" in the brain-health column. 

 

I would also tend to think that the more objective brain tests that we have, like SPECT scanning, immune-testing (like for specific receptor/subtype antibodies), EEGs, polysomnograms, or even CT-scans and MRIs, are also far from perfect. First, those tests have to be interpreted by a learned specialist. Second, It is almost certain that we still don't know enough about the human brain to even know what to look for with objective testing; we probably don't even know enough about the human brain to know what we don't know. Interpretation of tests is doomed to be flawed if the understanding about the relevance of the tests is also flawed.


Edited by Dichotohmy, 10 June 2019 - 04:08 PM.

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#14 whiteelephant

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Posted 10 June 2019 - 09:37 PM

What would be a mechanism behind this mood lability associated with poor frustration tolerance?  My psychiatrist thinks in terms of inhib. v. excit. mechanisms.   Baseline my mood is this oblivious calm state until one of my many mistakes occurs and I become intensely distraught, frustrated by my degree of incompetence and hopeless for anything but mediocrity.  

 

Thoughts on these conclusions and other research to evaluate:

 

Research shows that atypical depression only responds to MAOI-s, with some more severe symptoms only responding to parnate? But dopamine counteracts serotonin and may make MAOI-s anxiety provoking?

 

If it's an executive dysfunction issue, intuniv or guanfacine help?

 

Short SCL6a4 alleles do not respond to SSRI/SNRIs as well?

 

GABA deficiency or serotonin deficiency?

 

A lot of the phenotype to neurotransmitter mapping isn't accurate, but this distinction was helpful: https://www.eileenpu...ba-or-serotonin

And if so, overwhelm points to low gaba.  Perfectionism, anxiety, worry, low confidence point toward serotonin?  Is negativity more serotonin related and catastrophic thinking/frustration more gaba?

 

Low opioids and exec function?

Not as much research, but this https://neuro.psychi...opsych.16090171 links opioid PFC levels to exec f(x).  

 

Tried Pristiq, helped in a mediocre fashion, still left with a lot of negativity.  Prozac seemed to help more.  ADD issues largely there in parallel.  Briefly tried a TCA, seemed to help a bit.  But worried about anticholin and cardiac se's.  Also now that I'm on Strattera and since I'm a CYP2D6 metabolizer, there's a limit to what I can try.

 

 

Unfortunately, I have poor ability to project my emotions.  Only once something is immediate do I feel it, because I can think of the details.  It's almost as if I need things to be concrete to see the details.  

 

 

I don't want to be blissfully oblivious of my mistakes/trouble concentrating, but I also don't want to reinforce/forecast failure/not tolerate frustration/struggle.  What would I target?

 

 

 


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#15 jack black

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Posted 12 June 2019 - 03:06 PM


 

A lot of the phenotype to neurotransmitter mapping isn't accurate, but this distinction was helpful: https://www.eileenpu...ba-or-serotonin

And if so, overwhelm points to low gaba.  Perfectionism, anxiety, worry, low confidence point toward serotonin?  Is negativity more serotonin related and catastrophic thinking/frustration more gaba?

 

 

i'm not sure if that distinction is clear. regardless, according to dr Amen, you may be lacking both.



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#16 whiteelephant

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Posted 12 June 2019 - 04:15 PM

Thanks, not sure.  Appreciate the input.  

 

It's challenging as stims/strattera help me feel more aware of my mistakes/difficulty and worsen my mood.  Even with them, I don't always feel emotionally aware/directed towards larger goals.

 

What would be the best supplements/medication to target serotonin given the SCL6A4 mutation?  What about gaba?  Anything to counter the mood effects/crying jags of Strattera?


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