Thursday, 7 February 2013

Can You Treat ADHD? –Looking At Ways That Work.

Many people think that ADHD treatments that work are just a few pills which happen to be based on amphetamines. That means they are strictly controlled and that there are some question marks about their safety and side effects and so on.  Why do you think that the FDA ADHD drug warning is the maximum that exists? The reason is that there are risks and that is why they get the black box treatment.

But let us move away from these meds because there are lots of other ways that can and do work and they are all based on how we organize a child’s life and the support he receives at home and at school.

We need to think outside the box because we know in our hearts that pills will not teach skills and we are thinking here about academic performance and also social skills and the organisation of an ADHD friendly home especially if we have ADHD ourselves.

When we mention the latter we are wondering how our child is going to learn to :-

  • share
  • fit into his peer group
  • learn to listen
  • understand about turn taking.

The fact that these skills need to be taught means a lot of hard work and monitoring by carers and parents. The fact is that the major task lies in raising awareness in the child that this is the way to make friends.  All too often  kids with ADHD are excluded form their peer groups, simply because they have no idea of what these social skills are. This is perfectly understandable in that the child’s mind is:

  • operating at high speed
  • distracted by sensory images
  • highly impulsive
  • hyperactive

Talking to children, you soon realize that they cannot seem to stop their mind from going all over the place. This is also a major reason for lack of motivation as the dopamine and histamine brain transmitters are all skewed and are also not connecting properly.

The next problem is media time because of we allow the free rein, then they are hyped up and they go into their hyperfocus mode.  ADHD children can concentrate so well on certain things that they simply cannot be torn away from them. The mind is getting instant gratification from video games and that means that it is extremely hard to focus on an activity like reading and homework afterwards. Studies show that kids just cannot focus after a video game and I am not surprised. But video games can be used by therapists to help train the neural pathways

We have to limit media time strictly and also make sure that the TV or computers do not take over   a child’s free time and that we ourselves are setting the example by limiting our own time on these devices.

Why not discover more about trying natural options for ADHD instead on relying on pills that will not teach skills. 

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