While it is common to prescribe medication for children and adults with ADHD, many people are worried about the possible side effects of the medication, particularly after long-term use. There are several ADHD natural remedies that may be helpful in managing the troubling symptoms of ADHD in both children and adults. Many people prefer to try more conservative treatments before trying prescription medication. Most of the following remedies can be used alone, or in combination with ADHD meds, to help control negative symptoms and enjoy the positive aspects of this condition. However, your overall treatment plan should be supervised by your physician.
It seems that every day, science is finding new connections between our diets and our health conditions. Some studies, while not conclusive, have shown a possible link between some common food allergies and ADHD symptoms. Many parents of children with ADHD have eliminated these allergens from their children's diets, with noted improvement. The most common allergens include foods with artificial colorings, wheat, milk, and foods that contain salicylates, such as berries, grapes, and tomatoes. Many parents also report that cutting out all simple sugars from their children's diets seems to help with impulsivity and restlessness.
In addition to food allergies, some experts believe that dietary deficiencies may play a role in ADHD symptoms. Deficiencies in protein and Omega-3 fatty acids can be corrected by adding more cold-water fish to the diet. There has been some evidence that zinc deficiency is related to problems with brain function, particularly in those with ADHD. Zinc supplements should be used carefully, however, because they may interfere with iron levels. As with any supplement, always check with your doctor before using.
Of all the ADHD natural remedies available, one of the most often overlooked is physical exercise. If hyperactivity and restlessness are causing problems, the natural solution is to engage in vigorous physical activity to release some of the excess energy that is creating the problem. This is true in adults as well as children. Besides releasing excess energy, physical activity also releases endorphins in the brain, which can bring about a calmer and more focused mental state.
There are also a number of herbal supplements that may help with your overall ADHD treatment plan. Because herbal supplements are not regulated by the FDA, use reasonable caution when taking them. If you or your child is taking medication for ADHD, you should always check with your doctor or pharmacist to make sure herbal supplements will not interact with your prescription medication. Some commonly used ADHD natural remedies include melatonin, ginseng, and ginkgo biloba.
Other ADHD natural remedies involve techniques that help to calm and focus the mind. Meditation and massage therapy have both been reported to help people with ADHD become more focused. Newer methods include music therapy and a related technique called interactive metronome therapy. The rhythmic patterns used in both of these techniques are thought to improve concentration and motor control.