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What Is Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)

Mar 22, 2008
ADD is when the reticular activating system in your brain, which is a part of your body's central nervous system, is dysfunctional. This area of the brain is responsible for coordinating the information from one region of the brain to another via norepinephrine, due to external information. When it is impaired, there is excessive stimulation causing the mind to be overworked and unable to cope, leading to a lack of focus and other symptoms. This often leads to a person crumbling under pressure and the inability to complete a task that easy can also cause him to lose his self-esteem and think badly about himself.

There are many different forms of ADD, such as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Attention Deficit Behavior Disorder (ADBD), Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD) and Conduct Disorder (CD), to name a few. Of these, ADHD is the most well know form of ADD, and affects approximately 5% of all children in America, making it the most common neurological disease.

Many factors contribute to ADD, and the breakdown of the reticular activating system. Excessive sugar consumption reduces the brain's sensitivity to norepinephrine, making it difficult for the brain to pass messages to different regions of the mind. Other factors include oxygen deprivation during birth, genetics, a dearth of nutrients in his diet, and substance abuse during pregnancy, among others. Statistics from the National Institute of Mental Health show that up to 5% of the population has ADHD, and that up to 20% of pregnant mothers smoke during pregnancy, with 11% consuming alcohol.

Common indicators that an individual is suffering from ADD include learning disabilities, agitation, aggression, short attention spans and poor memory retention. The symptoms of ADD are also easily confused with other diseases or attributed to different factors, making it difficult to diagnose. For example, the main symptoms of ADD are forgetfulness, restlessness, depression, inability to focus and impulsive behavior. However, thyroid, depression, anxiety, or a stressful environment can also result in the same symptoms. Excessive sugar consumption can cause impulsive behavior and restlessness, and allergies can cause reactions that reduce the neurotransmitters in the brain causing the same symptoms.

There are many different kinds of treatments available for those who suffer from ADD, and the most common one is the use of antidepressant drugs. However, these medications need up to 6 weeks to take effect, and have severe side effects such as increasing depression, agitation, and suicidal notions. There are also alternative treatments, such as herbs and nutrients used to balance the brain chemistry that has been impaired. These are encouraged as they do not have side effects, and are specially designed to provide the necessary acids, hormones and neural growth needed to assist the reticular activating system.

For those who are suffering from ADD, it is recommended to cut down on sugar intake as sugar consumption is linked to aggressive behavior. Individuals should also be tested for allergies, especially those triggered by food dyes. In line with this, soft drinks which contain very high sugar content should be avoided.
About the Author
Greg Frost is a leading innovator in the field of ADHD and the founder of http://www.Attention-Deficit-Disorder.net which specializes in providing a whole range of ADHD Medications topics to improve the quality of people's lives and help them concentrate.
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