Is It Possible To Treat ADHD Without Medication?
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most high profile mental illnesses for children. Currently, the illness affects roughly 7 percent of 3-17 year-olds in the United States, and many more adults are diagnosed with ADHD or its cousin Attention Deficit
Disorder (ADD) later in life. There is some debate as to how many of these adults develop the conditions later in life, and how many simply went undiagnosed as children.
The most common treatment for the disorder are stimulants and treatment, but medications such as Adderall or Ritalin have many side effects that can be just as troublesome to children, not to mention they often become ineffective in helping patients.
Gregory Fabiano, Ph.D. recently found that there may be more effective behavioral treatments for ADHD that don’t require medication if implemented well into a child’s life. These behavioral treatments are also good suggestions for keeping your child mentally and physically healthy, so it is unclear whether they are sound treatments or simply tips for helping ease the troublesome symptoms of ADHD, but attempting to incorporate them into a child’s life certainly won’t hurt them.
According to Fabiano’s research, profiled by Rebecca A. Clay in the February 2013 issue of Monitor on Psychology, different behaviors and child raising techniques each showed different results. Improving exercise was tied to better attention, as well as improved math and reading comprehension. Rewarding a child’s success and giving immediate feedback help show a child what behaviors are well received and which need to be worked on to correct. Additional sleep was also found to decrease hyperactivity and increase focus.
Even if these behavioral treatments help children with ADHD without medication, the base of the treatment is still proper counseling and an early diagnosis. Working with parents to educate them about the symptoms and helping a child understand their condition early are the best tools for fighting the disorder.