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ADD/ADHD Think before you medicate. Because hyperactivity is a collection of symptoms and has multiple causes, without extensive testing, a physician.

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Presentation on theme: "ADD/ADHD Think before you medicate. Because hyperactivity is a collection of symptoms and has multiple causes, without extensive testing, a physician."— Presentation transcript:

1 ADD/ADHD Think before you medicate

2 Because hyperactivity is a collection of symptoms and has multiple causes, without extensive testing, a physician may choose to use a medication which may mask the real problem and cause problems in the child "Drugging the American Child: We're Too Cavalier About Hyperactivity," Walker S, J Learn Disabil, June/July, 1975;8(6):21-25.

3 Symptoms of ADD The child is restless and often fidgets or squirms while sitting The child is restless and often fidgets or squirms while sitting Has difficulty remaining seated when required to do so. Has difficulty remaining seated when required to do so. Is easily distracted by extraneous stimuli. Is easily distracted by extraneous stimuli. Has difficulty waiting for his or her turn in games or group situations. Has difficulty waiting for his or her turn in games or group situations.

4 Symptoms of ADD Has difficulty following instructions from others, even if the instructions are understood. Has difficulty following instructions from others, even if the instructions are understood. Often loses things necessary for tasks or activities at school or at home. Often loses things necessary for tasks or activities at school or at home. Often engages in physically dangerous activities without considering possible consequences. Often engages in physically dangerous activities without considering possible consequences.

5 Symptoms of ADD Often shifts from one uncompleted task to another. Often shifts from one uncompleted task to another. Often talks excessively. Often talks excessively. Often interrupts or intrudes on others. Often interrupts or intrudes on others. Often doesnt seem to listen to whats being said. Often doesnt seem to listen to whats being said. Has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities. Has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities.

6 3 Kinds of ADHD The American Psychiatric Association (APA) has established the symptoms and criteria for diagnosing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). These criteria divide the condition into three basic types based on major symptoms5: ADHD, predominantly inattentive type ADHD, predominantly inattentive type ADHD, predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type ADHD, predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type ADHD, combined type ADHD, combined type

7 Symptoms of ADD… Acting like a kid?

8 Symptoms of ADD Of course this diagnosis depends on the subjective opinion of the observer. The symptoms are not unique to a child with ADD and a child without ADD may have one or more of the symptoms.

9 It can be a problem Of course poor attentiveness and hyperactivity are symptoms that can cause problemsat school, at home and in life. Is it better to take a drug or to look for the cause of the problem?

10 Ritalin Side-Effects Nervousness and insomnia; hypersensitivity (including skin rash, hives, fever, joint pain, dermatitis,); anorexia; nausea; dizziness; palpitations; headache; dyskinesia; drowsiness; blood pressure and pulse changes, both up and down; angina; cardiac arrhythmia; abdominal pain; and weight loss during prolonged therapy. There have been rare reports of Tourettes syndrome. Toxic psychosis has been reported. Instances of abnormal liver function, anemia; transient depressed mood; a few instances of scalp hair loss have also been reported. Visual disturbances have been encountered in rare cases.

11 Ritalin Suppression of growth has been reported with the long-term use of stimulants in children.

12 Ritalinavoid it if you have seizures Safe concomitant use of anti seizure medication and methylphenidate (Ritalin) has not been established. In the presence of seizures, the drug should be discontinued.

13 Ritalin If a child has marked anxiety, tension and agitation they should not take methylphenidate hydrochloride, since the drug may aggravate these symptoms.

14 Before Labeling a Child as ADD or ADHD, You Need to ask, What Kind of Physical Exam Was Performed?

15 Many things can cause ADD symptoms Anemia Anemia Low thyroid function Low thyroid function Hypoglycemia Hypoglycemia Poor nutrition Poor nutrition Heavy metal toxicity Heavy metal toxicity A need for essential fatty acids A need for essential fatty acids Seizures Seizures

16 Dyslexia and Learning Disability Between first and third grades most children learn to read. From fourth grade forward, children read to learn.

17 Clues to a future problem occur early. When the child learns to talk, you may have a very hard time understanding him or her. The child may omit syllables from words insert her syllables that dont belong.

18 Clues to a future problem occur early. In preschool, if he or she cannot rhyme words or tell right from left, that may be a clue to a future reading problem. This, along with the earlier language problem, can be clues to a future reading problem.

19 Clues to a future problem occur early. Another clue is that spelling tests may be a problem (usually around fourth grade). The child may not only misspell the words, but if no one told you, you would have no idea what word he or she was trying to spell.

20 Sensory Integration Children with sensory integration problems do not properly process information from the environment. It can lead to unusual, even bizarre behavior. A simple example would be a child having trouble paying attention in class because he is focused on his uncomfortable shoes.

21 Sensory Integration A child may be oversensitive or undersensitive to a particular stimulus. Inappropriate processing of touch, movement, body position, sight, sound, smell and taste can all affect the behavior of the child.

22 Sensory Integration: Touch Oversensitive: The child avoids touching. He or she may have a fight-or-flight response to getting dirty, textures of clothes or food, or another persons light touch. Undersensitive: The child may be unaware of pain, temperature, or how things feel. He or she may wallow in mud, paw through toys purposelessly, chew on objects, rub against walls or furniture and bump into people.

23 Sensory Integration: Movement Oversensitive: The child avoids moving or being unexpectedly moved, and may be anxious when tipped off balance. He or she may avoid running, climbing, sliding or swinging. He or she may feel seasick in cars or elevators. Undersensitive: The child may crave fast and spinning movement. The child may move constantly, fidget, enjoy getting into upside-down positions and be a daredevil.

24 Sensory Integration: Body Position Oversensitive: The child may be rigid, tense, stiff and uncoordinated. He or she may avoid playground activities that require good body awareness. Undersensitive: The child may slump or slouch. His or her actions may be clumsy and inaccurate. He or she may bump into objects, stamp feet or twiddle fingers.

25 Sensory Integration: Sight Oversensitive: The child may be overexcited when there is too much to look at and may cover his or her eyes or have poor eye contact. He or she may be inattentive when drawing or doing deskwork, or overreact to bright light. He or she may be hyper vigilanton the alert and ever watchful. Undersensitive: The child may touch everything to learn because vision is not sufficiently coordinated. He or she may miss important cues such as facial expressions, gestures, as well as signposts and written directions.

26 Sensory Integration: Sound Oversensitive: The child may cover ears to close out sounds or voices. He or she may complain about noises, such as vacuum cleaners and blenders. Undersensitive: The child may ignore voices and have difficulty following verbal directions. The child may not listen well to his or herself and speak in a booming voice. He or she may want the TV or radio to be loud.

27 Sensory Integration: Smell Oversensitive: The child may object to odors, such as a ripe banana, that other children do not notice. Undersensitive: The child may ignore unpleasant odors like dirty diapers. He or she may sniff food, people or objects.

28 Sensory Integration Sensory integration problems can be from a need for serotonin. Movement and activity increases serotonin. Many think one possible cause of ADD is too much inactivity (TV, computers, video games etc.)

29 Treatment without drugs Start with nutrition (see the short video at wholehealthweb.com): Avoid refined sugar and refined white grains Avoid refined sugar and refined white grains Avoid hydrogenated oils (trans fats) Avoid hydrogenated oils (trans fats) Eat plenty (50% by volume) of fresh producemostly vegetables Eat plenty (50% by volume) of fresh producemostly vegetables Drink adequate water and exercise Drink adequate water and exercise Absolutely avoid chemical additives Absolutely avoid chemical additives

30 Supplementation Helps B vitamins are necessary for serotonin production B vitamins are necessary for serotonin production There is a lot of research showing the value of essential fatty acids. There is a lot of research showing the value of essential fatty acids. Minerals, especially magnesium and zinc are often necessary. Minerals, especially magnesium and zinc are often necessary. Drink adequate water and get regular exercise Drink adequate water and get regular exercise

31 Supplementation Helps Aqueous Chromium is a liquid multiple vitamin Aqueous Chromium is a liquid multiple vitamin Optimal EFAs® is an essential fatty acid supplementvital for proper function of the nervous system Optimal EFAs® is an essential fatty acid supplementvital for proper function of the nervous system B Lozenges is a source of vitamins B6, B12 and folic acidall are necessary for proper functioning of the brain and nervous system (and for serotonin production) B Lozenges is a source of vitamins B6, B12 and folic acidall are necessary for proper functioning of the brain and nervous system (and for serotonin production)

32 Supplementation Helps A study published in the Journal of Learning Disabilites (May, 1982;15(5): ) looked at B vitamin supplementation and hyperactivity. Some of the children in the initial sampling responded to the high-dose thiamin, with half of that group needing continued doses of thiamin. Others responded to the B6. Others responded to a hypoallergenic diet (the Feingold diet). The point is that different children respond to different therapies and there is no one size fits all solution for this particular health issue.


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