ADHD diagnosis

Sleep Problem or ADHD?

Sleep disorders and ADHD share many of the same symptoms. Children with sleep apnea were found to have symptoms of inattention, hyperactivity, learning difficulties, and aggressive behavior, which are similar to symptoms of ADHD. As for adults, symptoms of sleep disorders are also similar to those of ADHD. Both include trouble concentrating, problems with organizing, memory problems, and difficulty completing tasks. Sleep problems are extremely under-diagnosed in both children and adults, possibly because few pediatricians and physicians claim to be confident about helping patients with sleep disorders.
With sleep problems causing and potentially exacerbating symptoms of ADHD, it is important for people with ADHD to get a good night’s sleep. Remember to refrain from using electronics before sleeping. The light emitted from phones, laptops, and TVs interfere with the body’s melatonin levels and disrupt the sleep cycle. Also, talk to your doctor about concerns with sleep. If you think your behavior is not just caused by a sleep problem, Dr. Gordon is here to help with identifying and treating ADHD.

Contact Dr. Gordon for help with your ADHD. We have treatment and solutions available online, by phone, and in our offices.

written by:
 Brianna Malinowski, 
Jay Gordon, Ph.D

Breus, M. J. (2013, May 1). ADHD or Sleep Disorder: Are We Getting It Wrong? | Psychology Today. Retrieved from https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/sleep-newzzz/201305/adhd-or-sleep-disorder-are-we-getting-it-wrong

 

ADHD diagnosis

White Noise to Improve Attention

Due to the belief that people with low dopamine levels may benefit from external stimulation in order to better concentrate and perform tasks, white noise was suggested to help children with ADHD perform better in school. Although, white noise may be distracting for people without ADHD, it may provide enough brain stimulation for people with ADHD to improve their functioning.

This idea was confirmed through a study of one boy in first grade who had ADHD. Instead of focusing on his schoolwork, his attention was often on verbal, motor, and passive off-task behaviors. Verbal off-task behavior includes talking when not permitted to or making sounds for the class to hear. Motor off-task behaviors include standing, walking around, or playing with school supplies. Passive off-task behaviors are the times that a person visually focuses on something other than the task at hand. Before the boy was prescribed medication and before he listened to white noise, his behavior was off-task for about 89% of the time. When he listened to white noise in class with headphones, his off-task behaviors decreased to about 62% of the time. Even better results occurred when he began taking ADHD medication and listened to white noise, which reduced his off-task behavior to only 45%.

Since the addition of white noise through headphones increased attention in this boy with ADHD, other children may likely benefit from white noise as well. The sound, not only, immediately reduced all types of off-task behavior, but it also led to improvements in writing and math assignments. Perhaps most importantly, the child agreed that the white noise was helpful and easy to use.

Contact Dr. Gordon for help with your ADHD. We have treatment and solutions available online, by phone, and in our offices.

written by:
 Brianna Malinowski, 
Jay Gordon, Ph.D

Cook, A., Johnson, C., & Bradley-Johnson, S. (2015). White noise to decrease problem behaviors in the classroom for a child with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Child & Family Behavior Therapy, 37(1), 38-50. doi:10.1080/07317107.2015.1000234

 

adhd treatment

Movement May Improve Performance in Children with ADHD

A 2015 study of 52 boys between 8 to 12 years of age found that moving in the form of spinning or rolling in a chair, fidgeting, getting out of a chair, among other physical movements may actually increase the performance level of children with ADHD. Over the course of 4 weeks, these boys, some diagnosed with ADHD and some without ADHD, completed a series of memory tasks in a classroom-like setting. Their levels of movement were carefully observed, as were their levels of attention to the task.

As expected, the boys with ADHD showed more movement behaviors and fewer attentive behaviors than the boys without ADHD. Interestingly, higher levels of movement experienced by boys with ADHD were positively associated with higher scores on the memory tasks. In other words, the more that boys with ADHD moved and fidgeted, the higher their scores were.

It may seem counterintuitive that more movement could possibly cause ADHD children to earn higher scores. However, according to research, it actually makes sense. Children with ADHD have decreased activity in the frontal and prefrontal cortexes in the brain. Since physical movement increases cortical arousal, the extra movement may create the brain activity that these children normally lack. So, the movement that increases cortical arousal may cause children with ADHD to perform better than they would without moving.

 

Contact Dr. Gordon for help with your ADHD. We have treatment and solutions available online, by phone, and in our offices.

written by:
 Brianna Malinowski, 
Jay Gordon, Ph.D

Sarver, D. E., Rapport, M. D., Kofler, M. J., Raiker, J. S., & Friedman, L. M. (2015). Hyperactivity in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD): Impairing deficit or compensatory behavior? Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology. doi:10.1007/s10802-015-0011-1

 

ADHD diagnosis

Siblings of Children with ADHD

The entire family is affected by a child’s ADHD symptoms. Research regarding the siblings of children with ADHD reveals that they are negatively affected by the other child’s behavior. Here are some commonly reported feelings experienced by siblings of children with ADHD:

  • Feeling less important or forgotten about due to the family focus on the ADHD child.
  • Experiencing sorrow because their family is not “normal.”
  • Feeling victimized by their ADHD sibling due to acts of physical and verbal aggression and, therefore, constantly having to keep vigilant.
  • Frustration due to living in an environment with conflict and noise. Siblings often desire a more quiet and peaceful place.
    Feeling as though parents minimize their ADHD sibling’s violence and aggression. Oftentimes, violence is not taken seriously, leaving siblings with a sense of unsafety.
  • Resentful feelings due to ADHD controlling the family’s vacation, parties, holidays, etc.
  • Feeling as though it is their duty to take care of the sibling. For some children, this caretaking role is viewed positively, but for others it is a difficult burden.
  • Feeling as thought their identity is defined as being the sibling of an ADHD child.
  • Wanting their parents to understand what it is like to have a sibling with ADHD.

It is important to remember that one person with ADHD affects the whole family. If necessary, family intervention should take place in order to better maintain a healthy family life despite the struggles with ADHD. Siblings’ concerns regarding the ADHD child’s aggression should be taken seriously as safety is a priority and proper treatment for aggression should be utilized. Siblings should be involved in the treatment of the ADHD and should be rewarded for their help with the care of the ADHD child. Perhaps, most importantly, parents need to spend alone time with the non-ADHD children in order to keep a healthy relationship and give the child as much individual attention as possible.

Contact Dr. Gordon for help with your ADHD. We have treatment and solutions available online, by phone, and in our offices.

written by:
 Brianna Malinowski, 
Jay Gordon, Ph.D

Kendall, J. (1999). Sibling accounts of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Family Process, 38(1), 117-136. doi:10.1111/j.1545-5300.1999.00117.x