ADD & ADHD
Attention deficit & hyperactivity disorder
ADD and ADHD are the most diagnosed conditions of childhood and affect up to 9% of the population. ADD/ADHD is typically characterized by distractibility, impulsivity and the inability to follow through on tasks. Although most ADHD is diagnosed in childhood, the symptoms often carry over into adulthood.
Many studies have shown that the brain wave patterns of those with ADD/ADHD are characterized by too much slow brain wave activity in frontal regions of the brain. The frontal lobes are the executive control centers, and slowed brain activity frontally can lead to problems controlling attention, poor intellectual efficiency, as well as problems controlling emotions and behavior. Stimulant drugs can appear to slow down a hyperactive client by increasing the activity of faster waves in the frontal regions which can overcome the negative influence of too much slow wave activity. Often, parents comment that their child can focus on something they are interested in, such as video games. The excitement and excessive stimulation provided by video games acts like a drug to the client and makes the real world seem even more boring. Video games reinforce instant gratification, impulsivity and diminish the attention span.
The medications used for ADD/ADHD are not without side effects. The side effects most often associated with stimulants include loss of appetite, difficulty sleeping, increased heartrate and nervousness.
Neurofeedback provides an alternative treatment for ADD/ADHD and can often decrease or eliminate the need for medications. Recent studies have shown that the results of neurofeedback are long lasting.