ATTENTION DEFICIT HYPERACTIVITY DISORDER (ADHD)

What Is ADHD
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is a mental illness characterized by inattention and/or hyperactive impulsivity. It is a complex disorder that can negatively impact the lives of children and adults suffering from the condition. ADHD is hard to diagnose, while there is no cure, there are different treatment options available. Childhood ADHD can transfer into adulthood ADHD and lead to problems such as difficulty with focus and impulsive decision-making.

What Causes ADHD
The origins of ADHD are currently unknown. There could be a genetic or environmental component to the disorder. Risk factors can include smoking and alcohol consumption during pregnancy, low birth weight, brain injury and exposure to toxins either during pregnancy or at a young age. Lower levels of the neurotransmitter (a chemical messenger in the brain) dopamine may play a role in the symptoms and development of ADHD. Dopamine is known as a “reward neurotransmitter.” It makes you feel good after doing something like eating a piece of chocolate. For people with ADHD, the pathways for dopamine in the brain appear to mature later. This maturation could factor into impulse control.

When You Should Seek Treatment
If you or your child is having trouble focusing, it may be time to seek treatment for ADHD. Symptoms of ADHD include talking non-stop, having copious amounts of energy, inability to focus, constant daydreaming, and impatience. It is useful to note that unlike illnesses such as a common cold, there is no clear-cut method to test for ADHD. While it may seem like your child has ADHD, there could be other underlying issues involved such as nutritional or behavioral.

Why You Should Seek Treatment
ADHD in children can be disruptive to those around them, especially in classroom settings. Childhood ADHD can also transfer into adulthood which can lead to further complications. Indecision and impulse control tend to be common problems for adults suffering from untreated ADHD. Other issues involve problems with organization, reckless driving, poor listening skills, easily distracted, angry outbursts and restlessness or trouble relaxing. These problems could interfere with work and social relationships which can add extra stress to the sufferer’s life.

Treatment
There is no cure available for ADHD, but there are different treatment options available. ADHD treatment can involve a combination of psychotherapy (counseling) and medication such as stimulants. Ritalin and Adderall are two common prescriptions used to treat symptoms of ADHD and improve the overall quality of life; however, both can have negative side effects.

One alternative therapy available for those suffering from ADHD involves chiropractic care. The goal of chiropractic care is to restore the nervous system to an improved functional state. Chiropractic care can also help treat the anxiety often associated with ADHD.

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