Attention Deficit Disorder, also known as ADD, is thought be to genetic, based on information collected in various studies. This means that children inherit it from their parents, and it can show up in a child even if neither parent has ever been diagnosed with it. Studies continue to find out new things about this affliction, and therefore the diagnosis of it as well as proper and preferred treatment of it continue to change and evolve as doctors being to understand it better. ADD is not limited to children, and many people who have this affliction lead a normal life without even being aware that they have it.
Many parents, and sometimes even doctors will jump to the false conclusion that a child has ADD. This is sometimes also known as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. Although it is a quick diagnosis, sometimes the symptoms normally shown for ADD can be simply attributed to allergic reactions or certain foods or ingredients.
The fact that ADD is a “quick diagnosis” is a problem, because many times that diagnosis is not correct, and the root cause of a problem with a child is not diagnosed further to find the real reason for behavior differences or mimicking the classic symptoms of ADD. Just because a child is having a problem academically, emotionally, or socially does not automatically mean that the child has ADD. Most typically, children between 8 and 10 years old are the ones most frequently diagnosed with ADD or ADHD. At that age, children are starting to develop social skills and therefore the effects of a child who is not developing those skills as fast as his peers is readily apparent.
There are no sure-fire cures for ADD or ADHD. Some of the commonly prescribed treatments from doctors include drugs such as Ritalin and amphetamines, perhaps combined with some psychotherapy sessions. Although somewhat difficult to diagnose due to the wide range of symptoms, all of which we all experience from time to time, an accurate diagnosis is possible and should be done. ADD and ADHD symptoms include chronic tardiness and forgetfulness, undue anxiety, low self-esteem, issues with anger management, impulsiveness, chronic boredom, mood swings, difficulty maintaining focus, depression, and interpersonal relationship difficulties.
Scientific studies do not agree on the generally best treatment for ADD and ADHD disorders. A big reason for this is because the disorder can range from being very mild or hardly noticeable to being extremely noticeable almost to the point of disruption in a classroom setting. Many doctors are quick to prescribe drugs for treatment, but many times very effective treatment can be achieved by changing the child’s diet.
Removing things such as sugary breakfast cereals, soft drinks, cookies, and chocolate from a child’s diet can many times be as effective as prescription drugs, depending on the severity of the disorder and the willingness of the parent to take what many may consider “drastic measures” to remove such “staples” from their child’s diet. Logic would dictate that it would be much preferable to try this approach and watch closely for results that might show up as positive improvements, rather than throwing prescription drugs such as Ritalin down the throats of tens of millions of our children.