Recognizing and Treating ADD

 By: Michael Russell Platinum Expert Author
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) has been one of the most debated and controversial health issues affecting children in recent years with so many theories about its treatment and causes. Most experts agree that there are a variety of factors that trigger ADD and most are linked with food additives, the use of caffeine, lack of exercise, lead or other heavy metal poisoning, learning disabilities, or an unstable home environment. If the mother smoked while she was pregnant, the child is most likely to develop ADD.

There are more boys suffering from attention deficit disorder than girls. They ratio can be as high as 10 to 1. The disorder can also occur in adults but it is most associated with children. And a combination of the following symptoms may be a symptom of ADD: problems sleeping, excessive nervousness, tantrums, poor grades that don't reflect the level of intelligence, frequent mood swings, self-destructive behavior, disruptive behavior, a short attention span and the inability to concentrate.

The most common treatment for hyperactive children is to use stimulants such as Ritalin and amphetamines to curb and control they are unruly conduct. These drugs also calm them and supposedly make them better able to learn. However, more and more doctors do not agree to this drug therapy and are turning to natural ways and supplements to control the root cause of attention deficit disorder. Many believe that Ritalin only calms them physically but fails to cure underlying cause of hyperactivity. There are also the inevitable harmful side effects such as chronic sleeplessness, uncontrollable contraction in the muscles and tactile hallucinations. The side effects can even become worse when children quit using the drug. Other documented side effects of Ritalin including anxiety, nausea, convulsions, hair loss, slow growth and self mutilating behavior like chewing fingers and nails until they bleed.

If you suspect that your child or student is exhibiting signs of ADD, get them tested for food and environmental allergies. The most likely food allergy is a food your child always craves. When you know the trigger, teach your child to avoid it in his daily diet. Have a hair analysis done to check for toxic levels of heavy metals in the body. Also check for learning disabilities. The child can also benefit from regular exercise and the removal of all foods that contain artificial flavorings, conservatives, aspartame, nitrates and phosphates.

Do not allow your child to take caffeine, especially chocolate, if he is prone to violent tantrums. Eat fresh, whole foods, including plenty of fruits and vegetables. Avoid prepackaged meats, processed foods, butter, soft drinks and foods high in sugar like apples and apricots. Doctors who specialize in allergies have also discovered that artificial colorings and flavorings in candy, baked goods, carbonated drinks, cakes, canned food and artificially preserved foods or the most likely culprits that trigger hyperactivity in children. Skipping junk food and sweets can help reverse this condition. Ask your physician if your child can take two to three capsules of evening primrose oil daily. This herb has been found to improve the conditions of hyperactive children and in some cases provide a complete recovery.

Since ADD is primarily a neurological problem, it is important to supplement your diet with fatty acid supplements found in fish oil and flax oil. He can also undergo temperament therapy. For highly emotional and temperamental children, you may need to use alternative forms of discipline and refrain from physically punishing him punishing them. Sometimes children with ADD can also benefit from home schooling because they simply might have a different learning style. Children who also have learned to meditate have reported increased concentration levels and reduced stress that lead to the complete elimination of ADD.
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There is not only one test that could be used for diagnosing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in adults and children. ADHD will be diagnosed if a person is showing all or some of the symptoms of ADHD on continuous basis for more than 6 months. Additionally, symptoms should be present in multiple settings.
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ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) or ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) is a disorder that is characterized by hyperactivity, inattention and hyperactivity and impulsiveness of children. Kids with this disorder need more help than normal children and must be given proper attention and ADHD treatment as early as possible.

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