Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurological condition that affects behavior of a child. The affected child displays impulsiveness, lacks concentration and becomes hyperactive. Attention deficiency disorder (ADD) is another less disruptive condition where children do not show hyperactivity but lack concentration and are impulsive.
Children with ADHD need to be always active always therefore they are more disruptive than with children with ADD.
Chemical impact of different kinds of foods on the brain functioning has been found to be one of the main causes of both ADHD/ADD and the condition is on the rise globally.
Children of the age between 7-19 years are generally affected by ADHD, however, it can continue in their adulthood in some cases.
It is unfortunate that ADHD is not understood by those whose children are affected by it. Once the parent understand and empathize with child, the process of treatment can begin. Home remedies for ADHD form one of the most important part of improvement process.
What is ADHD?
ADHD is one of the most common childhood disorder. It is a complex neurological disorder that affects estimated 6.4 million children in the united states according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Children affected with ADHD are hyperactive; they have trouble focusing and can act without thinking. Though they do understand what is expected of them, they areunable to execute the instructions because they can’t pay attention to details and can’t sit still.It predominantly affects children, but adults also suffer from it.
ADHD can be treated naturally along with relaxation techniques. The alternative methods of treatment are more effective than drugs and generally have no side effects.
Although 60-70 % of the children with ADHD begin to focus and feel good about them, the long term impact of such medication has not yet been fully understood. In many cases these medicines can impact growth and add psychological disorders.
Symptoms of ADHD
Understand ADHD before Trying Any treatment.
It is important to understand the difference between normal temporary behavioral problems and ADHD. Both can easily be confused with each other therefore a proper diagnosis is important before latching onto any solution.
A child occasionally can get into aggressive childhood behaviors and this kind of normal noisy behavior shouldn’t be confused with ADHD. A child suffering from ADHD generally will shows consistent symptoms in one or more of the following three categories.
- Inability to maintain attention without being distracted
- Difficulties in doing or saying something due to impulsive nature
- Unable to control the physical activities that are required for any particular situation due to their being restless
What Causes ADHD?
A lot of research has gone into finding out the causes of ADHD. It is the higher brain functioning area of the brain where the causes exist. The restlessness, impulsiveness and inability of maintaining attention happens due to formation of complex neural networks in the brain area that govern the executive functions processes such as inhibition, working memory, planning, verbal regulation, motor control, self-monitoring, maintaining and changing mental set and emotional regulation.
ADHD certainly is not the result of laziness, low intelligence, selfishness or disobedience. It is also not because of poor motivation or poor upbringing. None of these problems can cause chronic inattention, hypersensitivity and impulsiveness which are the core symptoms of ADHD.
ADHD is a complex brain disorder caused by a number of factors that affect how the brain develops and functions. It affects many areas of the brain particularly those executive functions that control the regulation of behavior, working memory, thinking, planning and organizing.
Statistically, it has been seen that ADHD runs in the families. Heredity is certainly the most common cause of ADHD. Other risk factors for ADHD such as exposure to toxic substances in the developing fetus which affects the development and functioning of brain and acquired brain injury due to trauma or disease.
5 Home Remedies for ADHD
Parents must educate themselves about the complexities of behaviors in their ADHD affected child. This will help to empathize with the condition rather than getting disturbed by the erratic behavior of their child. Following are some of the lifestyle changes and home remedies that will help in improving the general behavior of the child in their journey towards normalcy. Parents must help them navigate through this difficult journey.
1. Relaxation for ADHD
The ADHD affected hyperactive child must relax to become normal, but because she is unable to focus or follow instruction he can’t be easily relaxed. It is a vicious cycle.
One of the best ways is to build excellent relationship with the child by understanding his/her liking and disliking. Understand what motivates child. Every child is different; therefore individual understanding of their inspirations is essential rather than making any general rule.
You as parent have to build a plan which needs to be executed with patience and should have perseverance to see it being successful over a long period.
Yoga and meditation are very effective relaxation tools. It is very difficult even for an adult to induct them into his daily routine, so for a child with ADHD to follow such activities will be even tougher.
The challenge is big but you want your child to relax. Therefore, you have to work hard on it. The hardest part is to first win the trust of the child. If you have already punished the ADHD child for his shortcomings then you have already lost his trust. Regaining this trust will take time and consistent efforts, but you must win his trust before teaching him relaxation techniques in a playful manner.
This is what you need him to do. You goal is to let him lie down on his back for 30 minutes. This is a tall order almost impossible to achieve in the beginning. He may not even do it for 30 seconds.
You have to also make sure that he breathes slowly. Faster breathing will not relax him. If you can make him do this for 30 seconds or so in the beginning and them develop an interesting playful reward scheme to motivate him to extend the period, you will do a great favor to your child. Make sure that the child enjoys the process.
You need to continuously give him instructions to breathe slowly.
It might take a year or more to reach this goal. If you remain committed, then you would have already made a subtle change in his ADHD condition. His focus span will increase in everything he does.
This slowly builds discipline and order of which he is subconsciously not used to because of his ADHD. Over a long period the balance between disciplined activities will abrupt action will improve and tilt towards normalcy.
2. Exercise of ADHD
Exercise stimulates the brain with more oxygen. Hormones and chemical released after exercise are the once that an ADHD child lacks. Encourage your child to do at least 30 minutes of exercises such as swimming, biking, running or play sports such as football.
3. Oil Massage for Calming Effect on ADHD Children
Oil massage gives a calming impact on the body and relaxes the brain. Give your child an massage daily before bedtime. It is very effective in most cases of ADHD.
Take any unrefined oil (coconut, olive, mustard or any other oil. Slowly massage on his entire body.
Tell an interesting story which maintains his curiosity. These bedtime stories and massage will help him develop focus. The massage calms him down and anticipation about what next in the story keeps him focused. Bringing the focus back is the first right step towards regaining normalcy of any ADHD patient.
Calmness and the focus are the two most important things that an ADHD child need desperately. He doesn’t know what he needs but you as parent know very well that his mind must calm down and he should be able to focus.
In fact, you can occasionally repeat a story told him in the past and motivate him to participate in storytelling. Let him feel sometimes that you forgot, so that he can recall.
Remember all the activities you do with your child will show the result over long period as developing a new habit by takes time. It requires persistent acts over and over again for years.
It is almost like coaching an ordinary sportsman for years to make him world class sportsman. ADHD treatment requires persistence and patience.
4. Diet - What o eat and Avoid for ADHD
In addition to relaxation, exercise and massage, diet can play a major role in improving child’s ADHD.
Avoid fast foods, high sugar and refined starch containing food. This itself should with 4-8 weeks begin to show improvements.
5. Effective Herbs for ADHD
Regular use of many herbs such as ginkgo biloba, brahmi, Siberian ginseng, gotu kola, and green oats has been found to improve alertness without any side effects or fewer side effects as compared to the prescribed medicines for ADHD.
A good combination of herbs, exercise routine (including relaxation and massage) and diet control as explained above can significantly reduce or even completely remove the necessities of using medicines in most cases.
It is also important to understand that the child must feel loved, nourished and motivated while you help him with the above remedies. Earning his cooperation is as must.
Precautions During ADHD
Since ADHD begins in the childhood and may or may not continue in the adulthood, it is important to understand the implications of long term medication. The family of the affected child generally doesn't want to go for long term medical treatment due to
- Unknown side effects of medication
- Impact of medications on child's thinking process
- Worries about child becoming dependent on medication
- Concerns about legalities of certain drugs which are classified as addictive drugs.
The parents of affected children should discuss all their concerns with professional doctors and understand alternative medications.
Above home remedies have worked well in most cases. It takes time but providing the right kind of environment to the child and focusing on what foods to eat and what to avoid can go a long way in dealing with ADHD.