advertisement
Updated 01 March 2013

Homeopathy for behaviour disorders in kids

Has your child been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder? Homeopath Genie Rowson explains why homeopathy is a good alternative to Ritalin.

1

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) or ADD (without the hyperactivity) is the most commonly diagnosed psychiatric disorder in children today. It is often believed to be a physiological brain disorder with a genetic component. ADHD/ADD is often treated medically with stimulant drugs such as Ritalin, oral antihypertensives and antidepressants. While these medications can at times be effective if carefully monitored, side effects are possible, and most of these drugs have associated risks.

Clinicians using homeopathy for ADD/ADHD have reported excellent results. In a study published in the British Homeopathic Journal, children diagnosed with ADHD were given a homeopathic treatment or a placebo for ten days, then their parents and teachers rated the children on the amount of ADHD behaviour they displayed. Those taking the homeopathic medicines showed significantly less ADHD behaviour, in just 10 days.

Common symptoms

ADD – the dreamy child: Symptoms associated with attention deficit disorder include restlessness, shyness, poor concentration and dreaminess, dullness, disinterest in life, vagueness, forgetfulness, listlessness, indifference. The child has difficulty collecting their thoughts, may have learning difficulties and be lacklustre and unresponsive.

ADHD – the impulsive, restless, distractible, hyperactive child: Symptoms associated with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder include excessive talking, aggression, impulsiveness, restlessness, distractibility, hyperactivity, a short attention span, concentration difficulty, precocious, impulsivity, capriciousness, weak self control, cannot stop themselves from interrupting, bossy, dictatorial, behaves like a tyrant, wants their own way, selfish, angry, irritable, loud, impulsive, overbearing, impatient, difficulty sitting still in class or waiting in line, fidgety, has temper tantrums, throws things, displays a violent temper. These symptoms may be accompanied by learning difficulties.

What causes behavioural problems?

Each child is an individual and it is therefore important to investigate and determine why he/she displays behaviour problems. There are many reasons, including:

  • Too little sleep or lack of refreshing sleep
  • Food sensitivities, digestion disorders and dietary deficiencies
  • Poor nutrition (see a dietitian or nutritionist if in doubt about a healthy diet and required supplementation such as with Omega 3s, Zinc, etc)
  • Emotional issues, self-esteem and confidence problems
  • Lack of exercise or physical movement
  • Over- or understimulation
  • Suppressive medicines and illnesses suppressed in the past
  • Lack of disclipline, order and boundaries within the home
  • … and many more.

Helping a child to reach his or her full potential emotionally, physically and mentally requires constant “fine-tuning” and a holistic approach, and I do not believe that a “sledge-hammer” such as Ritalin, or the like, is an appropriate or effective solution in most cases.

ADD/ADHD in adults

In my practice I have seen many adults who are, in fact, suffering from symptoms of ADD and ADHD. As with children, this can be caused by a number of factors, such as exhaustion and burnout, anxiety, insufficient rest and relaxation, poor nutrition and digestion, lack of exercise, being emotionally drained etc. Should they be given a hefty dose of Ritalin or should they rather address the stressors causing their symptoms to improve their mental, physical and emotional well-being and their symptoms of ADD/ADHD?

Facts about Ritalin and its generics: Ritalin is little more than "coke" for kids

  • On any given day in North America, almost five million kids take Ritalin, a powerful psychostimulant drug.
  • In 1990, 900 000 American kids were on Ritalin. Today some estimate the total number of children on Ritalin has increased to 5 million or more per year.
  • Emergency room visits by children ages 10-14 involving Ritalin intoxication have now reached the same level as those for cocaine, which indicates escalating abuse of this highly addictive drug. According to the US Drug Enforcement Administration, massive amounts of Ritalin are being diverted by adolescents and adults into recreational use, where it’s often crushed up and snorted, or even injected.
  • 80% of children on Ritalin are boys.
  • Stimulants do not provide a cure. Parents have been encouraged to believe that pharmacological control will boost their child’s learning and social skills, but this rarely happens. Dozens of objective studies have assessed the long-term effectiveness of stimulants on children’s academic performance, social development and self control. None has shown them to be effective for anything but controlling kids’ behaviour – an effect that vanishes once the drug wears off.

The side effects of Ritalin addiction include but are not limited to:

  • drug addiction
  • nervousness and insomnia
  • loss of appetite
  • nausea and vomiting
  • dizziness
  • headaches
  • changes in heart rate and blood pressure (usually elevation of both, but occasionally depression)
  • skin rashes and itching
  • abdominal pain
  • weight loss
  • digestive problems
  • toxic psychosis
  • psychotic episodes
  • severe depression upon withdrawal

High doses of stimulants produce a predictable set of symptoms that include:

  • loss of appetite (may cause serious malnutrition)
  • tremors, tics and muscle twitching
  • fevers, convulsions and headaches (may be severe)
  • irregular heartbeat and respiration (may be profound and life threatening)
  • anxiety, restlessness
  • paranoia, hallucinations, and delusions
  • excessive repetition of movements and meaningless tasks
  • formicaton (sensation of bugs or worms crawling under the skin)

Why homeopathy?

Homeopathy boosts the immune system by stimulating the body's own healing mechanisms and strengthening the body's natural resistance to disease. Homeopathy offers a greener, safer, more effective way to improve your family's physical and emotional health and well-being. Homeopathy is very helpful in alleviating all sorts of negative emotions and can be taken with any other remedies or medicines to promote emotional calm and restore balance.

Recommended remedies

ADD formula. Use this formula to improve symptoms associated with attention deficit disorder such as restlessness, shyness, poor concentration and dreaminess, dullness, disinterest in life, vagueness, forgetfulness, listlessness, indifference. Person cannot collect thoughts. Child may have learning difficulties and be lacklustre and unresponsive. This formula promotes concentration and focus. Heightens the sense of interest in life.

ADHD formula. This formula assists with symptoms associated with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder such as excessive talking, aggression, impulsiveness, restlessness, distractibility, hyperactivity, a short attention span, concentration difficulty, precocious, capriciousness, weak self control, cannot stop themselves from interrupting, bossy, dictatorial, behaves like a tyrant, wants their own way, selfish, angry, irritable, loud, impulsive, overbearing, impatient, difficulty sitting still in class or waiting in line, fidgety, has temper tantrums, throws things, displays a violent temper. Often accompanied by learning difficulties. This formula promotes a sense of calm, concentration and mental focus.

For more information or to order above potentised formulas visit www.naturesremedies.co.za.

Written by Genie Rowson, Regional Director (SA): British Institute of Homeopathy (BIH) International.

Read more:

What is homeopathy?
Homeopathy: a gift or con?
The ultimate ADHD guide
What's up with Ritalin?
Beyond Ritalin

Any questions? Ask our ADHD/ADD expert

 
NEXT ON HEALTH24X
advertisement

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Live healthier

Watch out! »

Gross fungal infections you can pick up at the gym

You go to gym to exercise. But make sure the only thing you pick up is a dumbbell and not one of these gross fungal infections.

Holiday health »

Your 10-step asthma holiday checklist

Don’t let asthma ruin your summer holiday. Whether you are travelling or embracing the summer at home, make sure you plan ahead.