Environmental Causes of ADHD
ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder) and ADD (Attention
Deficit Disorder) are generally described as genetic neurological
disorders. While this may be true in some cases, it is not true for all.
ADD and ADHD are controversial because they are many diverse and
variable conditions with shared symptoms. The diagnosis of ADHD symptoms
is by a set of behaviors. That is all there is. There is no
physiological diagnosis. If an environmental toxin causes a child to
behave hyperactive, then the child can be diagnosed as having ADHD. That
is not ADHD. The cause needs to be diagnosed.
Some of these ADD/ADHD like behaviors are due to environmental
toxins. With ADHD the cause needs to be treated, not the symptom. When
we have an infection we feel tired or low mood we recognise that these
are natural consequences of having an infection. Whatever the cause of
the infection is, the symptoms are exactly the same. ADHD is more
complex than a flu infection.
There are over 100 causes of ADHD like behavior, which share a set of
behavior patterns. A person with ADHD type behavior (that is what the
ADHD symptoms are) as a result of an environmental polutant can appear
to have ADHD, and if misdiagnosed as ADHD may be given stimulant
medication such as Ritalin. In our modern world we are exposed to toxins
and other substances which affect each of us differently. While most
people do not react to the sugar substitute aspartame, there are people
who are allergic to this chemical. If the cause of a child or adult’s
ADD/ADHD behavior is environmental, then covering the symptoms with a
stimulant ADHD drug is not going to help. ADHD stimulant drugs are a
quick fix to suppress symptoms; medication by itself is only a support
and not the cure. They have to be taken daily, the effect lasts only a
few hours and they do have side effects.
The list below shows a few of the environmental causes for ADD and ADHD type behavior.
Environmental Causes of ADD or ADHD
- The mother smoking cigarettes during pregnancy.
- The mother drinking alcohol or using drugs during pregnancy
- Substance abuse.
- carbon dioxide (CO2) poisoning.
- Over stimulation sitting in front of the TV and playing videogames together with lack of physical excercise.
- Sniffing solvents like modelling glue, fingernail polish and permanent markers.
- Lead poisoning. Children who live in old buildings in which there is still lead plumbing or lead paint may be at risk.
- Mercury poisoning.
- Manganese poisoning.
- Aluminium poisoning.
This list is intended to show the complexity of diagnosing attention
deficit syndrome. A good child psychologist who has experience with
treating ADHD children should be consulted before any medicinal
treatment is tried. A doctor should be consulted for screening for
possible physiological causes of the behaviour.
There are some natural supplements which can help the child focus. Among these is Synaptol.