ADHD - Detailed Info



ADHD or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is considered to be a neuro-behavioral disorder that can affect up to roughly 5 percent of the total world population. This is a chronic disorder which is described by constant impulsiveness, inattention or lack of focus (especially in school going children), forgetfulness and associated hyperactivity. Children and teens with ADHD often build up survival mechanisms to handle peer pressure that lead to evidence of poor academic performance and hyperactivity. ADHD principally affects a person behavior and cognition, therefore having the disorder has extensive emotional implications.

Low self-esteem is very common among women with ADHD and it is the effect of chronic criticism. ADHD earlier called hyperkinesis or minimal brain dysfunction is the most widespread psychiatric state among children. And, more boys roughly twice or thrice as girls, are affected. However in adults, this ratio is 1 to 1 among males and females. Calculating the average number of incidents, at least one child in each classroom in the U.S. requires help for the disorder. Intensity of ADHD can vary from mild, moderate to severe. Diagnosis of ADHD is more difficult to ascertain in women and girls as they are likely to be less hyperactive, less rebellious and more accommodating. The nonappearance of disturbing behavior also defers detection of ADHD in girls.

The statistics given by the National Attention Deficit Disorder Association reveal nearly 2/3rd of children with ADHD will persist to face major challenges caused by the disorder in the later stages of life or when they are adults. Follow-up studies on children with ADHD reveal that about half will carry on having symptoms into adulthood. When diagnosed with ADHD, several people summon up painful or difficult childhood experiences they went through in school which were possibly caused by ADHD, however at the time were attributed to sluggishness or lack of ability.

Symptoms of ADHD
•             Inability to pay concentration to details or making reckless errors
•             Complexity in sustaining attention to tasks
•             Appearing inattentive when spoken to directly
•             Inability to adhere to instructions cautiously and entirely
•             Losing important things or forgetting about them
•             Feeling restless or squeamish
•             Talking excessively or uttering out answers before listening to complete question

Presently, people who display chronic, monotonous and persistent symptoms across a number of settings, ADHD diagnosis are made in those people. Though people are identified with a few of these symptoms at different times in their lives, ADHD is a disorder that onsets in childhood and may persist into adulthood. Childhood onset is the only foundation of the diagnosis and adult onset ADHD does not exists. Early onset ADHD is diagnosed when symptoms appear before the age of 7. Parents and teachers may face a difficult time discriminating standard child behavior problems with those that are ruthless enough to be categorized as ADHD. To attain diagnostic level, a combination of the symptoms mentioned above should be there for at least six months and should exhibit a harmful effect on the child's home, school or social life.

Causes of ADHD

According to the report of the Center for Disease Control, 7 percent of children between the ages of 5 and 17 are identified with the ADHD disorder. Even though various causes for this disorder have been identified over the years, the principal factors are genetics, brain structure and environmental risks.

Genetics – The research conducted by National Institute of Mental Health demonstrates that ADHD have a tendency to run in families. A child's genes are the strongest analyst of the occurrence of the disorder. Children whose parents or siblings have been identified with ADHD disorder have a much greater possibility of being analyzed themselves. Various researches are striving to identify the precise genes implicated in the disorder. Since 2010, genes associated to the dopamine system are assumed to play a significant role in the regulation of attention and behavior inhibition and have been implicated in the occurrence of ADHD. However, further research is required to recognize particular genes.

Brain Structure - The prefrontal cortex is used to manage executive functioning such as the ability to receive and process information, shift from one task to another, plan, manage and accomplish goals. Children with ADHD find it difficult to do all this, signifying that they have shortfalls in the performance of this area of the brain. Another implicated area of the brain is the basal ganglia which are linked to executive functioning such as passing information related to attention, action and memory to the brain. Children with ADHD have confirmed anomalies and under-activity in the basal ganglia section, with signs of improvement when stimulant medications are used that effect this area of the brain. These revelations suggest that shortfalls in this area are associated with the limitations in performance of children with ADHD.

Environmental Risks - There also exist environmental aspects that can play a role in the development of ADHD. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, both alcohol consumption and cigarette smoking during pregnancy can lead to the development of ADHD. In addition, exposure to lead has also been associated with its development. An additional danger during pregnancy is fetal oxygen scarcity, which may affect areas of the brain accountable for executive functioning and inhibiting behaviors.

Other Possible Factors – In addition to above factors, the National Institute of Mental Health also illustrates two other factors believed to impact the development of ADHD. Refined sugar has been indicted of aggravating the symptoms of ADHD however research has revealed that children given sugar and sugar substitutes demonstrated no variations in their behavior. Further research has investigated the belief that food additives like preservatives and artificial coloring result in increased ADHD activity, but since 2010 it has not yet established that whether they also play a role in ADHD symptoms.

Treatment for ADHD

Pharmaceutical medicines considerably decrease the hyperactivity along with the ability to focus, work and learn and have kindled a great deal of debate. The majority of health-care providers themselves sense the possible side effects, which should be vigilantly considered against the benefits. Some of the side effects of ADHD drugs are growth suppression, weight loss, high blood pressure, hallucination, psychotic episodes and suicidal thoughts. Therefore, it is important to understand that there exist no direct magic pill or cure for ADHD. Combinations of Medical herbs and health supplements mentioned below along with behavioral therapy, emotional counseling and practical support may yield lifelong gains. This includes providing a suitable classroom setting, in addition to facilitating parents to comprehend and deal with the child's behavior.

Behavioral therapies such as group counseling where person with ADHD does not feel that he is the sole person being the victim of ADHD, receives counseling support from fellow group members and experts which significantly boosts the morale of the person with ADHD. Psychotherapy works to help out people with ADHD like and accept themselves regardless of their disorder. In psychotherapy, patient converses with the therapist about disturbing thoughts and feelings, investigates self-defeating patterns of behavior and gain knowledge of alternate ways to deal with their emotions.

Dietary Solution to prevent ADHD

An improper diet plays a significant role in the developing ADHD-like behavior in children. Completely altering the child’s diet so that no fast food, junk food or processed foods are consumed can prove wonders. IronChanging over from western diet to a diet rich in organic foods will certainly incite unbelievable change in behavior. Additives such as preservatives and artificial coloring agents found in processed foods are poisonous to the body and should be avoided. Additionally, refined carbohydrates should be avoided as they have unconstructive effects on overall health.

America’s chief source of calories is cancer-inducing fructose and its consumption induces a less compliant, more hyper child. Removing fructose from the diet will not only diminishes rates of cancer, diabetes, and obesity but will also positively affect children’s behavior.

A diet rich in fiber, folate, and omega 3 fats can purposely be consumed to speed up the positive response to a child identified with ADHD. A diet rich in organic fruits and vegetables as well as whole grains should be consumed so as to achieve these health promoting nutrients. Besides this, eating fish with low mercury levels such as flounder, haddock, and salmon and eating wild fish than farmed fish has found to decrease the risk of ADHD.

Herbs for ADHD

GINKGO BILOBA
GINSENG
PYCNOGENOL
VALERIAN
CHAMOMILE
LICORICE
KAVA-KAVA
LAVENDER
PASSIONFLOWER

Supplements for ADHD

S-Adenosylmethionine (SAMe)
Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA)
Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA)
Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA)
Vitamin B6 (Pyridoxine)
Iron
Magnesium
Melatonin