Young Boys with ADHD distracted by cellphone

You love your child. You choose their food, their school, their doctors and dentist carefully. You are intent on giving your child the best of everything. There’s no question that when you have the right information you make the best choices. When your child has ADHD, those choices get a lot tougher. Add to this the myriad of information that is suddenly being thrown at you. It can be overwhelming. From doctor recommendations to therapies to medications with said effects and names, you can barely pronounce. You want to help your child more than anything in the world but do they really need a ton of mind-altering chemicals dumped into their developing system? ADHD can be one of the toughest trials for parents. 

young boy at school with ADHD learning disability

You know your child has ADHD, they are unfocused, can’t follow directions, and struggle with being distractible, but there’s something about all this talk of medications that just doesn’t sit right with you. As you review the list of possible side effects and your pediatrician talks about tweaking dosage, there’s a feeling in your gut that just won’t go away. Is your beautiful bundle of energy really going to spend the remainder of their life taking some high-priced chemical concoction? Is the only solution to controlling their emotional breakdowns, constant chatter, and random impulses contained in a plastic bottle chaining them to a regime of pills lest they suffer academically and socially? Isn’t there a better way? The answer is… YES!

Is it possible that a tiny little tick could assault the brain and body and cause lingering mental health issues in its wake? Yes. But even with decades of research that demonstrates a causal link between infectious disease and psychiatric issues, our healthcare system still isn’t appropriately identifying and treating those afflicted with Lyme disease. The real question is: why are we missing these individuals?

Failure to Launch Young Adult

Retirement. It didn’t turn out quite like you expected. You and your husband planned to be traveling the world; chatting happily in little cafes, and enjoying cocktails on the beach, or admiring the view from your hotel balcony. Unfortunately, you are still working because your unemployed 24-year-old son is still living at home. No matter what you’ve done in the last six years, nothing is lighting a fire in this kid’s belly. He’s a good kid but he’s just not a good adult. Some failure to launch young adults have a long list of issues while others have a few, but all lack the maturity to move forward. In our last blog, we discussed why some young adults fail to launch. Here we explored interventions designed to help not just the FLS child but the whole family.

Failure to Launch Teenager

The Surge of Failure to Launch Syndrome Twenty-four million of those aged 18 to 34, lived under their parents’ roof in 2015, according to the US Census. That’s a third of young people!  There has been a definitive cultural shift resulting in more young adults living with their parents. Fear of failure in American teens and young adults, causes them to delay independence, thus creating a major stumbling block in our otherwise success-driven society. Often, this age group is referred to as emerging adults, based on the delay in their transition from dependence to independence. Even their language reflects this shift as the term “adulting” is used to describe moments of responsible behavior. Growing up is viewed as an optional choice rather than a necessity of life.

If your child has trouble identifying letters, with phonics, or in reading, it is time to consider whether they have Dyslexia. Reading, one of the most neurologically complex tasks a person will learn, involves auditory and visual systems, as well as cognitive processing, memory, and attention which all must work simultaneously. Children often struggle with reading, but if they show one of the signs of Dyslexia, then here are ten ways to help your dyslexic child.

Nationwide, 20% of the elementary school population is struggling with reading while one in five students has a language-based learning disability.  Currently, 80% of children with an IEP have reading difficulty, 85% of whom are diagnosed with dyslexia, a language-based learning disability.  Due to a lack of educator and administration understanding, Dyslexics are often misdiagnosed or diagnosed too late for early intervention. Early diagnoses and interventions such as Orton-Gillingham based programming (Wilson Reading and Lindamood Bell) are effective in remediating reading issues and to keep children from developing emotional issues and behavioral resistance that often arise from improper educational programming.

When we consider treatments for anxiety and depression, there is a pervasive false belief that pharmacological interventions are the only effective treatment. The truth is that other potentially more effective treatments than medication do exist and the central nervous system (CNS) can be regulated through these clinically valid therapies.* Addressing how the CNS responds to stress is an important first step that many natural therapies effectively cover. When we are under stress, these brain structures jump into action and prepare for a crisis, which then triggers the fight-or-flight response. The amygdala and hippocampus have a major role in emotional regulation and stress responses. They are part of the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal axis that can cause the CNS to react strongly to stimuli. The amygdala overrides the prefrontal cortex when involved with the fight-or-flight system. Without good prefrontal control, the amygdala hijacks the brain.* That means we react in less rational ways because the brain has gone into survival mode. Calming the CNS is critical in reducing anxiety and depression. Here are six natural therapies for anxiety and depression with research that supports their efficacy.

At our center in Ridgefield, CT, we support children and adults experiencing a behavioral, social, or emotional issue every day. As part of these interactions, we use short-term, intensive psychotherapy and brain-based therapies. For many reasons families seek out short-term, intensive therapy but ultimately they are looking for effective treatment for clinical issues.

Recently, Dr. Roseann was interviewed by the Ridgefield Hamlet Hub. Read the original interview here.  Shop small, do big things for your community