On an average week, I will get questions from patients regarding a multitude of conditions and whether or not chiropractic will have a strong clinical impact in improving those conditions. Two of the conditions I am most frequently asked about are Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Attention Deficit Disorder.
Is Chiropractic Effective For ADHD?
As a culture, we hear about ADHD and ADD everywhere these days. It has become a growing concern for a lot of parents as well as the educational system. In order to determine what is clinically appropriate for someone with these conditions, it is always important to first define the condition.
In today’s medical system you’ll find that the more vague the definition of a condition, the more vague and ambiguous the treatment will be…opening you or loved ones up to the risk of an improperly prescribed medication, improperly used medication, or even a treatment that proves to be ineffective.
Web MD defines Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder as a chronic condition marked by persistent inattention, hyperactivity, and sometimes impulsivity. ADHD typically begins in childhood and often lasts into adulthood with as many 2 out of 3 children experiencing symptoms that continue into adulthood.
Symptoms of ADHD
Symptoms of ADHD can vary from a person but there are three basic types of ADHD. Each one is identified by the symptoms of hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention. When the main symptoms are inattention, distraction, and disorganization, the type is usually called primarily inattentive. The symptoms of hyperactivity and possibly impulsiveness appear to diminish with age but are seen in the primarily hyperactive/impulsive type. The third type has some symptoms from each other and is called the combined type.
(Hang with me here…we are almost done with our definition) According to WebMD ADHD is more common in boys whose impulsivity and hyperactivity may appear as disruptive behavior. Inattentiveness is a hallmark of ADHD in girls but because they aren’t often disruptive in the classroom, they may be harder to diagnose. (1)
Now that we have defined our condition, let’s put all of this in terms that parents can understand. Imagine drinking an entire Red Bull or Monster Energy Drink over a 10-15 minute period of time. It doesn’t take very long for you to realize that you made a really bad decision. Your muscles begin to tighten, sometimes your skin tingles, you become overly sensitive to any type of sensory input like sound or light, it becomes difficult to focus on tasks, your thoughts race, you become irritable, and that’s just too name a few. Let’s be honest, we’ve all done it before. Here’s why it was actually a positive experience…because now you know how kids with ADHD and ADD feel!
So here is how chiropractors can help. When you receive a chiropractic adjustment it decreases the activity of the “fight or flight” portion of your nervous system known as your sympathetic nervous system; in turn decreasing stress, nerve sensitivity, and overactive nerve firing.
In addition, it engages the “rest and digest” portion of the nervous system known as the parasympathetic nervous system; allowing your body to relax more easily. So is it any coincidence that scientific studies are now showing that kids with ADHD and ADD who get regular chiropractic adjustments are calmer, demonstrate fewer episodes of acting out, show an increased ability to follow instructions, and improvements in general home and school performance? I think not!!
It’s time to have your kids adjusted so that we can help restore peace in your household!! Call us today!
1.) Understanding ADHD- the Basics (WebMD.com)