Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD / Hyperkinesis)
ADHD was previously known as hyperkinesis, a term indicating abnormal excessive movement, especially in children. As drug treatment has become common the tern ADHD has been promoted to emphasize attention deficit. The attention deficit portion of ADHD was previously known as learning disability. Hyperkinesis and learning disability can be present in the same person, or there can be a predominance of either condition. This discussion will concentrate on hyperkinesis.
ADHD appears by age seven and can continue into adulthood. The principal characteristic are hyperactivity, impulsiveness, and inattention. There may be one, two, or all three of these characteristics present. Boys are more often hyperkinetic than girls. There is usually no familial pattern to the condition; in fact, rarely is more than one child in a family involved even though there may be siblings.
The hyperkinetic child is not just an overactive youngster who cannot be controlled by his parents because they lack parental authority and disciplinary ability. The hyperkinetic child is actually at a neurologic disadvantage because of one or more physiological reasons.
There are many characteristics that distinguish hyperkinetic children. Some have several or most of these characteristics all the time; others display only a few of them.
There is yet another variation; some hyperkinetic children show considerable aggression or other symptoms during one part of the day, yet they are very loving and calm at other times.
Some of these characteristics are present at some time in almost everyone; their presence does not necessarily indicate ADHD. The condition must be present before seven years of age, lasting for 6 months or more. The behaviors must be excessive for a child of that age and interfere with school work, other children, family life, and/or physical activities. The inappropriate activity must be continuous, not just a reaction to a temporary situation. If poor behavior is only present in a specific setting, the circumstances of that setting should be suspect. For example, if the child does well in all of his classes except one or two, those classes should be evaluated.
Characteristics of hyperkinesis vary among people. Some of these symptoms can be correlated with the cause as found by Applied kinesiology examination.
- Movement is consistently excessive for the activity being accomplished. The child’s hands and legs are constantly moving; he has a tendency to rock and dance, with constant wiggles and jiggles. This over activity is sometimes seen in very early life when the child beats his crib, knocks his head, and / or heavily rocks his crib.
- Aggression toward his peers and parents is the child’s nature. He is compulsive in his disruption of other activities- when obviously causing an interruption, he cannot be diverted from the action. He has a compulsion to touch everything and everyone. His acts of aggression are often dangerous to his own safely, but he is incapable of recognizing the danger.
- Unpredictability. It is difficult to determine how the child will react in specific situations. He is impulsive and may react differently at different times. He is highly excitable, especially when something does not go as he wishes.
- Impatience. The hyperkinetic child has many demands that must be met quickly. He sometimes cries for no apparent reason and becomes frustrated very easily.
- Short attention span, with inability to concentrate. The hyperkinetic child rarely completes a project, and his capability of sitting quietly through school, meals, or TV programs is very limited, even though he may be enjoying a television program but cannot sit still and watch it. He gets up, moves to another chair, sits down on the floor, goes back to his original seat – continually moving about throughout the program.
- Poor coordination. The child is often considered clumsy and inattentive to what he is doing; however, closer observation shows that he is cannot coordinate the right side of the body with the left. Buttoning clothes and generally dressing is difficult. He has difficulty in writing and drawing because his eyes and hands fail to function harmoniously. He may be poor in sports, such as catching and throwing a ball and will frequently bump into objects.
- Poor sleep habits. The child is usually a restless sleeper who does not want to go to bed. He will wake often through the night. Many hyperkinetic children cannot get enough sleep for their bodies’ needs.
Cause & Treatment
Many children diagnosed as ADHD are given stimulant medication to make them more compliant and manageable. Sometimes other psychoactive drugs are added to the stimulants. Children with ADHD usually have a normal or above average IQ but drugs may suppress them at the expense of their imaginations, creativity, and overall enthusiasm for life. Many historically creative people would today be closed as ADHD.
There is no single approach that is inclusive to treat hyperkinesis. A thorough examination of physiology and function is necessary to find the cause of the problem. The examination should begin with a health history and then include a general health examination. The more specific items that apply to hyperkinesis are found in a AK functional examination that follows the general health examination.
As found in AK diagnosis, there are 3 basic causes a child is ADHD. (Structurally, Chemically, Mentally.) When one or more of these causative factors is found and subsequently treated, the return to normal of hyperkinetic children is exceptionally good without the use of drugs. The use of specific adjustments and precise nutrition can make a huge change ! ! !