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  • Writer's pictureDr. Kristen Mitteness

4 Easy Ways to Reduce ADD/ADHD Symptoms

I went to a seminar a few weekends ago as part of the pediatric diplomat course entitled Developmental Neurobiology. Although I didn't learn what I expected learn, it opened my eyes to a whole new way to enhance my chiropractic practice. Taking the course was the best mistake I have made so far in 2016.

Since the course, I've been reading and researching as much as I can in the realm of functional neurology. I've been reading Dr. Robert Melillo's book, Disconnected Kids, who explains that diagnoses such as ADD, ADHD, dyslexia, autism and other neurological disorders fall under an umbrella called "Functional Disconnection Syndrome". Although this problem results in different symptoms in different children, the actual problem comes from the way the right and left brain communicate with each other. If we can improve this communication and get the level of functioning on each side congruent, we can see huge improvements in symptoms.

Has your child been diagnosed with ADD/ADHD? Give these activities a try for 12 weeks and see if you notice any improvement.

1. Get out and move. Children are active. We need to be encouraging them to be active. This doesn't have to b structured or organized activities, but we do need to make it fun. Turn everything into a game. Challenge your child to run to the tree as fast as they can. See how many jumping jacks she can do in one minute, have him run in place for 30 seconds, grab a football and make her run routes. Simply, wear your child out regularly. Aerobic activity improves brain development and the firing of neurons. It will also help burn that extra energy that children have. Please, limit screen time and encourage play time. It's essential for brain development.

2. Find an activity book and dedicate a minimum of 20 minutes a day to it. The activity book should be appropriate for the child's age and should include numbers, words or letters, mazes, etc. Use colored pencils or crayons. Different colors stimulate the brain differently.

3. Eliminate gluten, dairy and processed sugars. These foods are common triggers of brain inflammation. No ones brain should be inflamed. Your child may not have full blown food allergies, but I would bet he or she has food sensitivities that are triggering neurological symptoms. I know I said these would be easy steps and I know that altering your diet is not so easy, but this step will result in huge improvements.

4. Encourage multitasking. Have your child balance on one leg while reciting the alphabet or spelling different words. Have your child skip rope while telling a story. Have your child jump up and down while counting by two's. Using the brain to actively think while performing physical activity will help improve brain function.

I had a 10 year old boy come in who has been diagnosed with ADHD with a decrease in right brain activity. After assessing him, I adjusted him based on his subluxation findings (T6 rotated left, left innominate flexed, left rotated C1), ran him through a couple of drills with his sister focusing on left brain stimulation and re-tested his balance with his eyes closed. Immediate improvement! I might have been more excited than him. I sent him home with some more activities to do to further his brain balance and I'm pumped to see where we can get him. On top of his chiropractic care and neurological drills with me, he is also seeing a vision specialist.

Balanced brain activity is so important to a healthy life. Your brain and nervous system truly control everything that goes on in your body. From your proprioception, to your immune system to your sense of smell and touch, you need your brain to be able to communicate with itself and your body. Let's raise healthy, balanced children together!

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