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Natural Remdies for ADHD Children and Lifestyle Changes are an Alternative to Medications

Feb 25, 2008
Natural remedies for ADHD children do exist. As most people are aware, ADHD stands for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. Children affected by this disorder have a difficult time keeping still, maintaining their concentration, forgetfulness, impaired judgment and learning disabilities. The majority of children diagnosed with this disorder are put on Ritalin or other pharmaceutical therapies.

Studies have shown that ADHD is caused by a problem in the area of the brain that is responsible for coordinating external stimuli. Norepinephrine, a chemical in the brain, carries messages back and forth between different areas of the brain. These messages activate the needed areas, while telling unneeded areas to shut down. In ADHD, this process is impaired, allowing different areas of the brain to compete with various stimuli. The result is confusing for the child, and they can get irritated, aggressive or anxious.

For those who wish to use natural remedies for their ADHD children, there are diet and lifestyle changes to make in addition to herbal remedies. They have been found to be effective, and don't lose effectiveness over time like pharmaceutical drugs.

First, the child should avoid sugar. There is evidence that children with ADHD may not process sugars properly, resulting in aggressive and restless behavior. Soft drinks should also be avoided, even the sugar-free varieties. Soft drinks contain phosphates that cause exaggerated muscle activity due to the fact that they displace calcium and magnesium levels.

Make sure your child gets enough sunlight. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is sometimes misdiagnosed as ADHD or ADD. Full-spectrum lighting can be used if the child cannot go outdoors.

The herbs that have been found most useful in treating ADHD naturally are Skullcap, Gingko biloba, German chamomile, Oatstraw, Gotu Kola, Rooibos, Valerian, Lemon Balm, Ginseng (both Siberian and Panax) and Hawthorn. Some of these herbs can be found in combination remedies.

Gingko is well-known for improving memory. It also increases blood flow to the brain and increases the neurotransmitter levels, which will improve a child's ability to focus. Gingko also tends to make these changes permanent, so it doesn't need to be taken forever.

Gotu Kola also helps memory and brain function, while decreasing anxiety. Research is also showing that Gotu Kola helps increase circulation.

Siberian Ginseng is another brain stimulant (amazingly, stimulating the brain actually helps those with ADHD to focus). It also helps moderate the body's release of energy. Panax Ginseng normalizes body function and relieves stress and fatigue.

Yet another facet of natural remedies for ADHD lies in homeopathy. Homeopathy distills the essence of plants into small beads that melt under the tongue. Homeopathy is based on the theory that like cures like, so if you had a fever, you'd take a remedy that was known to cause heat. That is a very simplistic explanation, but it conveys the gist of it. Many parents have had good results using homeopathy for ADHD, and the remedies are extremely gentle. Nux Vomica, for example has been used successfully for ADHD, in the 6x strength, which is available over the counter at any health food store that sells homeopathic medications.

Try out some of the natural remedies for ADHD before subjecting your child to the pharmaceutical alternatives. Whether you choose homeopathic or herbal remedies, you can find something safer for your child.
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