ADD and ADHD
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Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are common childhood psychiatric disorders with features of chronic inattention, hyperactivity, disorganization and forgetfulness, impulsivity, and emotional difficulties. The similar symptoms are also found in adolescents and adults.
The exact cause of ADHD is still unknown. Researchers believe that heredity is the most common cause of ADHD. Other risk factors for ADHD have to do with factors that can influence brain development and functioning, such as exposure to toxic substances in the early childhood development, and acquired brain injury due to trauma or disease.
Common Treatments and Side Effects
Treatments for ADD and ADHD may include medications and behavioral therapies, according to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH). Stimulant medications (Ritalin, Addrell) remain the mainstay of treatment, which were received by 87% of patients in 2010. In the last 30 years, there has been a twentyfold increase in the consumption of drugs for ADHD and ADD. People, especially parents, start to ask why we reply so heavily on these drugs and if these drugs are safe. More parents question the drug adverse reaction, addictiveness and side effects with long term use, not to mention that no study has found any long-term benefit of attention-deficit medication on academic performance, peer relationships or behavior problems.
Common side effects of ADHD/ADD medication include:
This results in increasing interest in complementary and alternative therapies such as acupuncture.
How We Can Help?
Over the years, TCM practitioners have been working with parents and western medicine doctors to ease the behavioral disorders and address some of the negative side effects from the drug use.
Acupuncture is proved to be an effective tool in addressing behavior disorders. How? Acupuncture regulates the flow of the energy and restores the normal balance inside the body. It helps patient to regulate sleep, calm the impulse, improve concentration and bolster the immune systems and energy. All these address the important symptoms such as sluggishness and hyperactivity commonly seen in these patients, and help patients maintain a positive outlook in life.
Acupuncture also works as a complementary method for ADD/ADHD treatments. Most ADD/ADHD medication are associated with some known side effects. Individuals may suffer different side effect. When we evaluate the patient’s treatment history and identify possible side effects, we will treat all the disruptions to the flow of energy of the body, including those introduced by medications. For those who have to reply on medication for a long term, it truly benefits their overall health and improves the medication effectiveness.
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