What causes A.D.D.?
The causes of ADHD for Orange County children can be described in terms of neurological structures within the brain with slight malfunctions, or in terms of what causes these malfunctions in the first place. The first is usually obscure and confusing to most us and is hard to relate to our daily world. The second is more understandable and practical in my opinion, and that is the approach we shall take.
Genetic: Approximately 80-85% of this disorder is genetically based (in our DNA or family tree). While consistently passed on to each successive generation, this gene does not always manifest, or show up in all offspring. This means that while it may be present in one or both parents, in may skip generations or manifest in one of a parents’ children and not another. In looking back up the family tree you may see it in an aunt or an uncle, or a grandparent (or not if it was not properly diagnosed).
Oxygen Deprivation At Birth: There are a number of conditions, which can bring this about. Premature Birth, Jaundice, and difficulty in labor can all result in oxygen deprivation at birth. Those these condition do not always cause ADHD, they certainly can.
Drugs and Alcohol in the Prenatal Environment: Excessive alcohol and /or drug use by the mother while the child is in the uterus can cause a number of problems, and ADHD is one of them. In addition to this problem, there are also other learning and behavioral disorders which can compound the ADHD problem.
Head Trauma: Injury to the head or neck can also bring about this disorder. This can be the result of a cesarean or forceps assisted delivery, a serious fall or blow to the head, or something as routine as a “normal” childhood fall from a tree or down to the stairs. This cause is less predictable as there are many injuries as serious as a skull fractures which don’t result in ADHD, while often mild injuries can bring it about.
While it is interesting (and in some instances prevention is possible) to know the causes of this disorder, the majority of the time the cause of ADHD is not in any way a parent’s fault. Misplaced guilt, or the idea that a child’s problems reflect on them (not my child!) can cause pain and anxiety and many parents will deny the possibility of the problem and the necessary testing and/or treatment. Often parent also resist testing because they dread the possibility of what think are the unavoidable side effects and rigors of ADHD medication. This is definitely not the only solution!
Individuals can retrain the attention mechanisms and/or impulse control mechanisms of the brain during Neurofeedback. It is a painless, drug free procedure which alleviates the condition. No further treatment is necessary once the training is complete.
For more information, please contact Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari at his Southern California Neurofeedback center.