Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, is commonly identified when a child has difficulty paying attention and controlling his/her behavior. Over the past ten years, we have witnessed the rate of children diagnosed with ADHD increase by 42%. The potential for over-diagnosis has caused a lightning rod of controversy within the medical profession as doctors have begun to speak out about the number of prescriptions that are filled each year for powerful stimulants such as Ritalin and Adderall.
Why It Matters:
Providing powerful psychoactive medications to children has a significant set of risks, without providing a cure. And while the medications can improve the symptoms, they don’t address any of the underlying causes of the disorder. This is why leading healthcare organizations have begun to encourage a more conservative approach to managing ADHD. Adding conservative care, such as behavioral therapy, has been shown to eliminate the use of medications for nearly 40% of kids.
- The American Psychological Association has recommended behavioral therapy as a first line treatment for kids under 5.
- Exercise elevates the levels of dopamine and serotonin which can increase focus and attention.
- Reducing sugar intake while increasing protein and high-fiber foods can help stabilize energy levels.
Our practice has worked with many families who have a child diagnosed with ADHD. We will happily direct you to additional resources that will help you find natural treatment options including our upcoming workshop: It’s All About Healthy Kids.
Twenty-Year Trends in Diagnosed Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Among US Children and Adolescents, 1997-2016. Pediatrics. 2018. Time. Growing Up with ADHD. 2018.