Orlando Therapist ADHD Expert Gives Three Most Hated Non-Medical ADHD Tips
While prescription medication has it’s place, there are research studies which show children who have been placed on ADHD medication while young are substantially more likely to use and abuse drugs as they get older. Why?
The most common reaction is “My parents are giving me drugs, why don’t I medicate myself?” There are multiple other options to treat ADHD symptoms, and they can be life changing. One of the ways they are life changing – literally – is because the modern American life can negatively impact ADHD symptoms. Think about your day;
- How many hours do you spend texting?
- Watching t.v.?
- Sitting in front of the computer?
- Sitting in general?
- Eating fast food or ready made (boxed) foods such as crackers, cereal, chips and other snacks?
While to many people, snack here and there, and a lot of computer time may have little impact, for those with ADHD symptoms the negative impact may be quite high. Think about our society;
- We drink caffiene to wake up and stay awake
- We eat things people probably shouldn’t ever eat and take pills to settle it in our stomachs.
- We are mostly too sedentary, and not honoring our bodies need for sleep and rest, due to staying up late to watch television.
- We wake up tired or exhausted and start the cycle all over again.
If you or your child are experiencing ADHD symtpoms, inattention, lack of focus, can’t sit still, day dreaming, etc., here are the three most hated non-medical tips for combating ADHD:
1. Reduce TV & Screen Time! Actually, get rid of most of your family’s “screen time.” Any screen counts; television, computer, I-pad, phone and movie. Each of these screens trains our brains to have a shortened attention span. Adults: If you have a few t.v. shows you can’t live without, it would be recommended to ween yourself off of them completely, or at least, DVR them and watch them only after your child has gone to bed. Save watching movies as a special family treat on rare occaisios.
2. Change how your family eats! If you have any questions about this part, you can do your own research, consult with your doctor or pediatrician, or consult with a nutritionist. (Ask around for a highly recommended one.) Americans eat too many carbohydrates. For example, when your child eats a bowl of cereal (even cereal that portrays itself as “healthy,”) for breakfast, the carobohydrates quickly turn to sugar which may give your child a quick energy boost, but that energy is gone 30-45 minutes after eating that cereal! Instead, try a more balanced breakfast. For example, eggs and toast, yogurt and fruit, lean bacon (or even turkey bacon) and an egg. A higher protein breakfast can provide nearly four hours of energy! Imagine how much better your child will be able to focus if s/he can pay attention from breakfast through lunch time.
3. Get moving! Some people self medicate their ADHD symptoms with exercise alone as hyperactivity is extra energy and can be burned by walking the dog or running in the morning! Exercise does not have to be joining a sport, but that would be great if you can do it. Swimming is excellent for ADHD symptoms. Getting off the couch or out of the chair and exercising for even five minutes will significantly contribute to increased focus and attention.
To read more, please visit Total Life Counseling’s web site. There are free articles and interviews which will give you more information on how you can combat your child’s (or your!) ADHD symptoms without using prescription medication.
Our Orlando Based Marriage Expert Counselors and Therapists at Total Life Counseling Center offers more free tips at http://www.totallifecounseling.com/ Our TLC offices are located in Lake Mary, Winter Park, East Orlando, Southwest Orlando and Clermont Florida. Contact us at (407) 248 0030 or http://www.totallifecounseling.com/
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Author Laura Peddie Bravo, MA, LMHC | Edited by therapist, counselor Dr. Leslie Hamilton, Ph.D., LMFT & James L West, MA, LMHC, NCC