ADHD Myths


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ADHD Myths

It is a myth that poor parenting causes ADHD. However, it is highly probable that poor parenting greatly contributes to the severity of ADHD symptoms. Setting a family schedule, setting clear expectations and consequences, and being consistent are some of the parenting skills necessary for the ADHD child. While much research has been done on the subject of food additives, diet, and ADHD, this subject remains highly controversial. The National Institute of Health consensus conference (NIH 1982) concluded that controlled studies "did indicate a limited positive association between defined [Feingold-type] diets and a decrease in hyperactivity."

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) has found more than 20 controlled studies of diet and behavior. Most of the studies found that food dyes and, in some cases, other additives, and foods provoked symptoms of ADHD or other behavior problems in some children. It is often difficult for a family to follow a restricted diet. Support groups dedicated to ADHD and diet can be found on the Internet. Not all video games are created equal. Some video games encourage higher order brain functions and reasoning while some video games require only the ability to point and shoot. While too much TV or video game play does not appear to cause ADHD they may exacerbate the condition. Several studies have shown that chronic play of violent, high stimulation video games actually lowers metabolic rate in the brain's frontal lobes.The frontal lobes control attention, impulsive control, and other executive functions.

Carefully monitoring what your child is playing and limiting the amount of time your child plays are good practices. ADHD doesn't necessarily diminish as one grows older. Concentration and impulsive difficulties often persist into adolescence, causing significant difficulties. Instead of being hyperactive, teachers may notice restlessness, inattentiveness, or excessive talking.

Approximately 60% to 70% of children with ADHD have symptoms into adulthood and can be diagnosed in adults.

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