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How is the ADHD brain different?

The scientific community generally agrees that attention deficit hyperactive disorder or ADHD is a biological condition that is associated with certain dysfunctions in the brain. While there are indeed differences in the brain of children with ADHD and in the brains of children without it, you must remember that these differences are not necessarily a cause of ADHD. On the contrary, the brain deficiencies of children with ADHD are also symptoms of an underlying disorder caused by many factors that are related to the environment.

If you ask a medical doctor for a biological explanation about ADHD, he or she will probably say your child's brain lacks two important neurotransmitters - dopamine and norepinephrine - which are responsible for carrying signals to cells. As a response to this deficiency, your child's doctor probably prescribed Ritalin or other ADHD medications. These drugs are designed to momentarily increase levels of dopamine and stimulate brain circuits, resulting in an enhanced ability to concentrate and accomplish tasks. However, recent research on the brain structure of children with ADHD has yielded surprising results: ADHD has less to do with chemistry or the lack of neurotransmitters and more to do with the electrical impulses that lead to the release of those neurotransmitters.

When dealing with the ADHD brain, the UnRitalin Solution goes beyond the standard medical explanation - a chemical imbalance - and sees three major deficiencies in the ADHD brain. Our understanding of those three deficiencies are based on recent scientific research.

1. Brain hemisphericity. A "normal" child's brain has no trouble activating the left and the right hemispheres of the brain. On the other hand, a child with ADHD experiences a deficiency in either the left or the right hemisphere. Research shows that it's usually the right hemisphere that fails to work as it should. In other word, one hemisphere is "weaker" than the other.

2. A developmental delay in the circuits of the brain. Related to problems in brain hemisphericity is a delay in brain development. A child with with ADHD may be 10 year-old in age, while parts of his brain may be functioning at the level of a seven-year-old, which can explain why he or she has problems controlling behavior. Developmental delays are actually caused by a number of environmental factors called antecedents and triggers, which is why the UnRitalin Solution focuses more on getting rid of these factors instead of just momentarily stimulating the brain with drugs. For as long as triggers continue to work on antecedents, the imbalance will remain, and the symptoms will persist.

3. Sensory integration problems. Because of the problems brought by brain hemisphericity and developmental delays, the child with ADHD has problems processing sensory information. Their senses are either hyperactive (they feel too much) or hypoactive (they don't feel enough).

An important part of the UnRitalin Solution's approach to ADHD is to perform a series of tests that will identify any brain deficiencies. The good news is that there are specialists who can rehabilitate the brain through safe procedures like chiropractic neurology, neurofeedback or sensory integration approaches. And what's even better is that all these approaches are done naturally - meaning, your child won't have to rely on chemicals or medication to correct any deficiencies that may be present in his or her brain.

What is important for you to understand is that ADHD is a condition that goes beyond merely genetics or chemical imbalance in neurotransmettors. While the symptoms of the disorder primarily express themselves through the brain, these symptoms are actually expressions of other imbalances in the body caused by environmental factors. This is why an effective, long-term treatment for ADHD must go beyond the brain to address these issues.