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ADD

Question:

My son has all of the signs of ADD (every one of them). I wanted to know if there is a diet for this? We have him on a low sugar diet and that has seemed to stop his panic attacks. he is 11 years old and we are not intrested in putting him on any pharmacutical meds. Is there help in diet?

thank you,

nbnina@aol.com

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Answer:

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p>There is certainly no harm in having your son on a low sugar diet and it may somewhat help him. However, this is a more complex problem than diet, by itself, can control.

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p>First, unless your son has been diagnosed you do not know if he has ADD or some other problem.

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p>Second, people with ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) can respond quite well to Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy that is specifically targeted to the behaviors that prevent them from functioning well at home and in school. For example, he can learn how to set priorities, how to organize his note books, and how to ask for assistance. He can learn about the electronic aids that may assist him. Such electronics as a Palm Pilot, Organizer and/or Lap Top computer are excellent machines that he can use in school and might help him a great deal. In fact, there are many skills and techniques he can learn with target behavioral therapy.

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p>However, there are limits to what can be accomplished without drugs if the ADD is very severe. ADD is not a single diagnosis. Some youngsters experience ADD, meaning that they have difficulty focusing their attention on classes or even ordinary conversations. Then, there are youngsters who experience ADHD (Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity), which is the overall heading for disorders in this category. ADHD brings with it hyperactive behavior that children seem unable to control. Because you are asking about diet and sugar I assume that your son has ADHD.

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p>Many parents of children with ADHD worry about the side effects that the stimulant medications have on health. However, there are newer, non stimulant medications that work as well or even better than the old stimulant medicines. I want to gently suggest to you that the combination of the correct medication and therapy will go a long ways to helping your son make a better adjustment to school and home.

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p>Please keep in mind that ADHD and ADD carry several risks with them: 1. Children who experience these difficulties can become depressed as a result of school problems as well as problems making and keeping friends, 2. Because of the learning problems that arise with ADHD (assume I mean ADD as well), it can become easy for youngsters to identify themselves as outsiders who, during adolescence, can gravitate towards anti social types of teenage friends who smoke, use drugs and ditch school Much of this can be averted by intervening when the children are young and providing them with every chance available to feel successful in school and socially.

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p>I can only report to you that I have seen some wonderful results when children with ADHD are on the correct medications and in the correct therapy.

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p>I want to urge you to have your son correctly diagnosed. There are many problems that can look like ADHD but are not. Many years ago I had an experience with a youngster who was fairly out of control at home and school. When she was finally diagnosed she was found to have a very over active thyroid gland. When her thyroid condition was corrected with medication, she became a model citizen and student. It changed her entire life for the better.

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