Chelmsford ADHD Support Group

Key Advice

The following information represents the brief details of our recommendations to those who have ADHD/AS or other co-existing conditions.  Links are provided to pages dealing with each aspect in greater depth providing full explanations and details.  We believe this advice has far reaching and proven beneficial impacts.  This site will gradually be updated with full explanations of why we believe this advice works.  Please note our advice does not follow the latest fads but rather has been based on a gradual understanding of ADHD/AS and other co-existing conditions and proven results for the advice we provide.

Disclaimer
The support group does not hold legal liability for the advice contained on this page.  It is however compiled from a number or sources both medical and non-medical and is provided with the expectation of the due ability of adults to be able to make informed decisions.

  • Brief Introduction
  • 1 - Remove Known Problem Chemicals from Diet
  • 2 - Vitamins & Mineral Complex
  • 3 - Locate and Remove Allergic Reactions
  • 4 - Implement Routines
  • 5 - Behavioural Treatment
  • 6 - Regular Controlled Physical Activity
  • 7 - Maintain Brain Glucose Levels
  • 8 - Self Regulation Fuel Tank Replenishment
  • 9 - Sleep (Quality and Quantity)
  • Other things to consider

Brief Introduction
Research into ADHD/AS and its co-existing conditions have shown that the brain for these individuals is designed and functioned differently to the majority of the population. Different and variation in the human race is well documented covering all aspects of the body, therefore is it not surprising that the human brain is also subject to variation. As a support group take the position that variation in the human race is commonly unaccepted by society and discrimination of many types unfortunately exist. We hope to raise awareness and understand of these differences which make us human and should be celebrated.

Our advice works alongside current prescribed medication, and in most instances helps it to be more effective.  Likewise those who chose not to medicate the following advice details the non-medication recommendations which we believe all those with ADHD/AS and co-existing condition should implement.

Compassion and willingness of Others
The compassion and willingness of others to make accommodations are vital to the success of any of the recommendations made.  Usage of "medication" and/or "non-medical chemical advice"  (removal of problem chemicals and allergens and taking of vitamin & mineral complexes) are required to implement all other recommendations successfully.

1 - Remove Known Problem Chemicals from Diet
Below is a link to a PDF file which contains the list of all the known chemicals added to food, drink and cosmetics.  We recommend a complete removal of all listed chemicals from the ADHD'ers diet.

List of Problem Chemicals
Shopping list sheet - additives-shopping-list.pdf

NB:  Benefits are seen from the complete removal of the entire list of chemicals.  This is not a cure and many symptoms of ADHD will still occur however this advice offers reduction and relief from the instances caused by the chemical reaction.

Further information on the known problem chemicals (additives) ...

2 - Vitamin & Mineral Complex
The most common vitamins ADHDers show signs of deficiency are Zinc & B6 however many also show signs for calcium, chromium, copper, essential fatty acids, magnesium, iron and selenium.  These are seen even with the best balanced diet due to issues with differences of how the ADHD and ASD digestive system works and associated conditions.

We recommend considering diagnosis for deficiency issues as explained on our introduction to Vitamins and Minerals.

We then recommend that every ADHD individual take a daily Vitamin and Mineral Complex, that ideally does not contain any chemicals listed under "Known Problem Chemicals", to be taken daily.  Please note that taking vitamin and mineral complexes affects diagnosis and may prevent diagnosis.  The best good product we have located is the Vitabiotics range of products such as Well Kid, Well Teen, Well Man & Well Woman and can be purchased from most chemists and supermarkets however is cheaper via our Online Store.  NB:  Other brands have been checked and all to date contain worse or higher levels of "Known Problem Chemicals" compared to Vitabiotics in their WellKid range but seem not to use any in their other ranges.

Further information on the vitamin and mineral deficiency issues ...

3 - Locate and Remove Allergic Reactions
All food allergies can cause a negative impact on ADHD.  Some intolerances are more common than others however all are equally important to pinpoint and remove from the diet.  ADHD'ers like everyone else in society is intolerant to at least one food type.  Common symptoms for anyone with a food intolerance is attention deficit, hyperactivity, impulsiveness, poor emotion control, poor working memory etc, so combined with having ADHD the problem is made significantly more acute.

The common symptoms apart from ADHD type symptoms are  headaches, diarrhea/constipation, swelling, rashes, stomach cramps and vomiting and much more.  The question therefore is how to pinpoint what you allergic to and remove it from your diet.

Common Allergies for ADHD'ers:

  • Lactose
  • Gluten
  • Tomatoes
  • Oranges

Link to list of Allergies and Symptoms:
Wikipedia - Allergens

4 - Implement Routines
Routines are key for individuals with ADHD/ASD due to changes causing increased stress.  Routines at home are governed my parents.  Parents also are highly influential in introducing children to an expectation of routines in school and so incorporating the routine of school within your standard routines is very much something parents are actively involved in.  Sudden changes should be avoided, however preparation for such sudden changes should be taught regularly and started as much in advance of the change as possible.  It is not beneficial for ADHD'ers to avoid change but rather learn how to cope with it.  This therefore means parents need to find strategies for coping with the child not coping with change.  This may well be the need to initially avoid large changes and start with small changes whilst teaching the child how to cope with the change.  The changes then over a long period of time can be increased in significance reinforcing each time the key methods of how to cope and what level of reaction is considered normal and acceptable.  Many aspects needing to be taught will be aspects the average person in society may well normally pick up without being taught it however with ADHD'ers this often needs to be taught and over emphasised as they don't often naturally pick up on these things due to the informative years normally not being centered on social interaction and people, but rather events and activities.

We recommend establishing good solid routines.  That said we also recommend against completely avoiding any change as life is about change and educating children is about preparing them for life.

5 - Emotional Control & Behavioural Advice
This is a very significant part of much of the problems which lead parents to seek diagnosis and help for their children.  Once diagnosis is obtained many parents feel lost as the advice and help they looked for to help deal with these issues was not provided to them.  We therefore have begun to create as much information as we can to provide a range of helps which are known to help ADHD'ers deal with the issues.  Please read our section on Emotion Control and Behavioural Advice as this will explain what you need to know in detail.

There are also books which parents find very helpful such as 1-2-3 Magic which is available for purchase on our online store in both printed book and KIndle formats. The store also contains other books and various help tools etc which are also worth considering.

Further information on the Emotion Control and Behavioural Advice ...

6 - Regular Controlled Physical Activity
Ideally individuals with ADHD would benefit from regular controlled physical activity such as swimming clubs, athletics clubs, martial art clubs, gymnastics clubs, cycling clubs, dance clubs or other activity which the individual is naturally disposed to and/or has interest in.

7 - Maintain Brain Glucose Levels
Ideally individuals need to eat foods with long term energy release to maintain glucose levels in the brain; however extensive brain activity can cause sudden reductions in brain glucose levels and so liquid based glucose drinks can deliver glucose to the brain quickly.  With liquid glucose drinks they only need to sip the drink over a period of time (e.g. an exam).  Please note that although drinks such as Lucozade are ideal in nature they often contain chemicals known to cause issues and so drinks such as 7Up or a home made option would be preferable.

8 - Self Regulation Fuel Tank Replenishment
It is important that after a long period of Executive Function (Brain Usage), such as a day at school, it is important to replenish the self regulation fuel tank.

  • Build Self Esteem (Positive Emotions) and Implement Rewards;
  • Take 10 minute breaks between Executive Function or Self Regulation tasks;
  • 3+ minutes of relaxation or meditation;
  • Visualizing and talking about future rewards before and during Self-Regulation demanding tasks;
  • Routine physical exercise and also glucose ingestion (e.g. via sipping fluid based glucose for fast release into the brain)

9 - Eight to ten hours sleep per night
It is has been proven on many occasions that sleep is important for ADHD children.  We can provide help and support for resolving sleeping issues and sleeping disorders which can occur alongside ADHD.

Other things to consider or maintain:

  • Social Skills Therapy
  • Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, with concentration on Executive Function
  • S.A.D. Lamp
    This has been shown to help a range of conditions including ADHD and other neurological conditions.  More knowledge on how many are helped by this is needed however so far all those who have tried it have reported beneficial impacts.  Please let us know if you've tried it and if you've noticed any improvements.

Reminder of Effects of ADHD
By disrupting Executive Function and Self Regulation ADHD effects:

  • Self-restrain or inhibit behaviour, thoughts, words, emotions;
  • Self-manage to time; anticipate and prepare for the future;
  • Self-organize and problem solve across time;
  • Self-motivate across time;
  • Self-regulate emotions across time;

Combating these issues is required as source in the environment where they occur.  No clinic based therapy has ever proven effective, but rather must be done by parents, teachers and other care givers.

 
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