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Attention Deficit Disorder

ADHD or Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is indicated by hyperactive behavior and difficulty in concentration. While some kids display only signs of inattention, others are hyperactive and inattentive. ADHD kids are always fidgety and restless and cannot sit still for long. They interrupt others and are always restless and running about.

The actual cause for ADHD is not known though one of the theories is that some people do not have enough neurotransmitters that can control behavior. Often ADHD is genetic. Boys are three times more likely than girls to have ADHD.

  • Constant restlessness
  • Talking and playing too loudly
  • Interrupting others
  • Difficulty in following instructions
  • Distracted and forgetful
  • Disorganized and inability to pay attention to details
  • Running around at the wrong place or time
  • Difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities
  • Not following through on instructions and failing to finish schoolwork

Diagnosing attention deficit disorder is essential to help understand the problem. The diagnosis of ADHD is a collaborative effort between teachers, parents and physicians. It could include medical evaluation along with assessment of cognitive ability and IQ and review of school performance.

Speech and language evaluation is also conducted. ADHD is often accompanied by some other behavioral or emotional problem. Children with ADHD tend to experience adverse effects in academic and social and emotional development. The ADHD child may squirm, fidget, and climb or run when it is not appropriate. The levels of inattention and hyperactivity compromise the child's daily functioning.

This includes problem solving, open and effective communication skills, anger management or conflict resolution. The child needs to be taught social skills and behaviors. Medication for ADHD is restricted to amphetamine-like stimulants such as Ritalin and Dexedrine.

They reduce hyperactivity among children and help them focus their attention. Behavioral improvements such as lesser aggression and forgetfulness are also noticed. But the side effects of this Class A drug are insomnia, loss of appetite and weight loss. The child may experience sadness, depression and sleepiness.

Biofeedback Training

Biofeedback training is a process wherein the patient is trained to improve his/her health by using signals from his/her own body. It helps a person control physiological processes such as blood pressure, heart rate and muscle tension. These processes actually are involuntary but can be manipulated and controlled at will. Biofeedback therapy is used to treat conditions such as migraine headache, tension headache, urinary incontinence, high blood pressure, chronic pain, etc.

The concept behind biofeedback training is very interesting. It utilizes the power of the mind to become aware of what is happening within the body. This awareness helps a person to gain more control over bodily functions, involuntary ones too. This therapy works wonders on people experiencing stress. Stress can cause fluctuations in blood pressure and biofeedback therapy aids in relaxation.

Electrodes are attached to the patient's skin, which sends information to the monitor. Based on the monitor reading, the therapist understands the mental activities of the patient. The parameters that are monitored include blood pressure, sweating, breathing rate, and muscle activity. If a patient is experiencing stress at a particular moment the above mentioned parameters may alter. Understanding this alteration can help understand which part of the body needs to relax.

Depending on the severity of the issue, the number of sessions may vary. A session may typically last from 30 minutes to one hour. Biofeedback therapy does not have any side effects or pose any risk and is a non-invasive procedure. To undertake a session in biofeedback therapy, it is advisable to work with a health care professional trained in biofeedback.

Biofeedback therapy uses

Biofeedback therapy can be used to treat:

Chronic pain: Helps in identifying tight muscles and relaxing them, relieves lower back pain, abdominal pain, etc. This therapy benefits people across all age groups.

Anxiety: Anxiety relief is one huge area wherein biofeedback therapy can be very helpful. The therapy helps understand the body's responses when a person is stressed and anxious. By understanding this, one can control body response using biofeedback therapy.

Urinary incontinence: People may have trouble in controlling the urge to urinate. This therapy, particularly in women helps in tightening the pelvic floor muscles that control the urge/feeling to urinate. It is helpful in treating kids who bed wet.

Headache: Stress and muscle tension can cause headaches like migraine and other types of headache. This therapy can help relax the muscles and reduce frequency as well as severity of the headache.

Other conditions that can be cured using biofeedback therapy include ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), asthma, constipation, rheumatoid arthritis, COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), high blood pressure, etc. Different relaxation exercises used in biofeedback therapy:

  • Deep breathing

  • Guided imagery: Concentrating on a specific image and focusing on the image to make the person feel relaxed.

  • Progressive muscle relaxation: Alternately tightening and relaxing various muscle groups.

  • Mindfulness meditation: Focusing thoughts to let go of negative emotions.

Biofeedback therapy types

Neuro feedback: Used to measure brain wave feedback. Used to treat epilepsy and other seizure disorders.

Thermal biofeedback: Used to measure skin temperature. Used to treat headache and Raynaud's disease.

Electromyography: Used to measure muscle activity and tension. Used to treat conditions such as headaches, back pain, anxiety disorder, incontinence, muscle retraining after injury.

Electrodermal activity: Used to measure sweating and can be used in pain and anxiety.


Inositol is part of the Vitamin B group. Our body manufactures Inositol from glucose. Next to Niacin, in terms of quantities, human body contains more Inositol, specifically in the spinal cord nerves, the brain and the cerebral spinal fluid. Inositol is a fundamental ingredient of cell membranes. It is necessary for proper functioning of nerves, brain and muscles in the body. Inositol is essential for growth and survival of cells in bone marrow, eye tissues and the intestines. It enables hair growth and helps prevent baldness. Inositol or as some call it as Vitamin B 8, prevents collection of fats in the liver.

Role of Inositol

  • Plays a vital role in chemical reactions which are associated with the production of glucose.
  • Facilitates normal functioning of the body (side effects result when the levels are low).
  • Aids in efficient processing and conversion of nutrients into energy.
  • Nourishes the brain.

Functions and Importance
Inositol is a key component in various biological processes:

  • Cell Signaling: Inositol acts as a second messenger molecule, helping to transmit signals from hormones and neurotransmitters.
  • Phospholipid Metabolism: It plays a crucial role in the metabolism of phospholipids, which are essential for cell membrane structure and function.
  • Insulin Sensitivity: Inositol has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity, reducing the risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
  • Cardiovascular Health: It helps regulate blood lipid profiles, lowering LDL cholesterol and triglycerides while increasing HDL cholesterol.

Clinical Relevance
Deficiencies in inositol have been linked to various health issues:

  • Depression: Low inositol levels have been associated with depression, anxiety, and bipolar disorder.
  • Obesity: Deficiencies in inositol may contribute to obesity, as it helps regulate glucose and lipid metabolism.
  • Cardiovascular Disease: Insufficient inositol intake has been linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Inositol supplement

Our body makes enough Inositol to function normally. Deficiency of Inositol in healthy individuals is a rare occurrence. Caffeine (exceeding 2 cups per day) can lower Inositol levels and lead to Inositol deficiency. Inositol deficiency symptoms include eczema, gastritis, hypertension, fatty infiltration in the liver, and hardening of the liver and patchy baldness. In such cases, Inositol supplement is recommended by the healthcare provider. Diabetic people may experience an increased excretion of Inositol and can make up by taking Inositol supplement in the form of powder or capsules.

Effect on Pregnancy : Pregnancy is characterized by a physiologic increase in insulin resistance, which, when associated with increased oxidative stress and inflammations, could induce alterations of glucose metabolism and diabetes. If the situation is not controlled properly these conditions may affect the mother and the fetus.
Inositol (Myo and d-chiro-Inositol [DCI]) and antioxidants such as lipoic acid, Resveratrol and epigallocatechin-3-gallate [EGCG]) have shown anti-inflammatory and insulin-sensitizing properties in recent studies. Inositol acts as a mediator of the action of insulin, and it is necessary to activate key enzymes in the metabolism of glucose.

Inositol supplementation is often used to:
Support Mental Health: Inositol has been shown to improve symptoms of depression and anxiety.
Regulate Blood Lipids: It can help lower LDL cholesterol and triglycerides while increasing HDL cholesterol.
Improve Insulin Sensitivity: Inositol supplementation may be beneficial for individuals with insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes.

Doses of Inositol are prescribed by health care providers for people suffering from medical conditions or disorders such as Polycistic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) , high cholesterol, schizophrenia, ADHD, insomnia and depression.
PCOS is a metabolic and hormonal disorder and probably a common cause of infertility. Insulin resistance and the consequent hyperinsulinaemia contribute to hyperandrogenism development which is a marker of PCOS. In such cases, oral administration of Inositol improves insulin sensitivity.

Because of its beneficial effects, Inositol is used in the treatment of bipolar mood disorder, Alzheimer's disease, binge eating disorders and retinopathy of prematurity. Inositol can improve nerve function in diabetics. In some cases, Inositol has helped in reversing the nerve damage. It helps reduce the pain and numbness due to nerve deterioration. Also, Inositol can improve the sensitivity of insulin in the human body, which is highly beneficial to control diabetes. Inositol is given to premature babies with respiratory distress.

Other Inositol benefits

  • Aids in the breakdown of fats
  • Helps in the reduction of bad cholesterol.
  • Has a calming effect on the central nervous system.
  • Useful in treating eczema.
  • Helpful in treating constipation.
  • Maintains hormone balance by controlling estrogen levels in the body.

Side effects of Inositol

Synthetically manufactured Inositol is available in the form of tablets, capsules and powder. There is no RDA for Inositol and some cases have been given doses ranging from 2 gm to 18 gm with no serious side effects.
Pregnant women should take Inositol only under medical supervision as it may result in contractions. Possible side effects include tiredness, dizziness, hives, itching, wheezing, skin rash and swelling of mouth and throat. Deficiency of magnesium and potassium, high blood pressure are other side effects to look out for.

Recommendations for Healthcare Professionals

Screening: Consider screening patients with depression, anxiety, obesity, or cardiovascular disease risk factors.
Supplementation: Recommend inositol supplementation (500-2000 mg/day) to individuals with documented deficiencies or those at high risk of deficiency (e.g., vegetarians, vegans).
Dietary Counseling: Encourage patients to include inositol-rich foods in their diet.

Dietary Sources

Inositol is found in various food sources:
Legumes: Beans, lentils, and peas are rich in inositol.
Whole Grains: Brown rice, whole wheat bread, and quinoa contain inositol.
Fruits: Berries, citrus fruits, and apples are good sources of inositol.
Vegetables: Sweet potatoes, carrots, and broccoli also provide inositol.

Tags: #Attention Deficit Disorder #Biofeedback Training #Inositol
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Collection of Pages - Last revised Date: June 14, 2024