What is the smart way to manage ADHD?

According to Dr Bhupendra Chaudry, consultant psychiatrist, Manipal Hospital the various ways to manage ADHD smartly are:

Behaviour therapy

Behaviour therapy provides support for carers of children with ADHD, and may involve teachers as well as parents. Behaviour therapy usually involves behaviour management, which uses a system of rewards to encourage your child.

Parental training

If your child has ADHD, specially tailored parent training and education programmes can help you learn specific ways of talking to your child, and playing and working with them to improve their attention and behaviour. You may also be offered parent training before your child is formally diagnosed with ADHD. These programmes are usually arranged in groups and can last several weeks.

Social skills training:

Social skills training involves your child taking part in role play situations, and aims to teach them how to behave in social situations by learning how their behaviour affects others.

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT):

Cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is a talking therapy that can help you manage your problems by changing the way you think and behave. A CBT therapist would try and change how your child feels about a situation, which would in turn potentially change their behaviour. CBT can be carried out with a therapist individually or in a group.

Intervention of Yoga: Yoga is an ancient Indian traditional practice which consists of cleansing techniques (kriya) specific postures (asana), breathing techniques (pranayama), relaxation techniques, meditation etc. It needs limited space, no equipment, is easy to learn, and is culturally well accepted.

DR Mooventhan from S Vyasa Yoga University recommends certain Yoga asanas and kriyas for those with ADHD:

Kriyas: Jala Neti (nasal cleansing with water) and Laghoo Shankhaprakshalana (short intestinal wash),Kapalbhati (frontal brain cleansing), and Trataka (concentrated gazing)

Asanas: Pawanmuktasana part 1 (Anti-rheumatic group of practices), eye exercises, slow Suryanamaskara (Sun salutations), Shavasana (corpse pose) and Advasana (reversed corpse pose) can help. Makarasana (crocodile pose), Padmasana (lotus pose), Yogamudrasana (psychic union pose), Siddhasana/Siddha Yoni Asana (accomplished pose for men/women), Paschimottanasana (back stretching pose), Vajrasana (thunderbolt pose) and Shashankasana (pose of the moon or hare pose) are useful too.

Marjari-asana (cat stretch pose), Vyaghrasana (tiger pose), Ushtrasana (camel pose), Tadasana (palm tree pose), Tiryaka Tadasana (swaying palm tree pose), Padahastasana (hand to foot pose), Kati Chakrasana (waist rotating pose), Trikonasana (triangle pose), Bhujangasana (cobra pose), Shalabhasana (locust pose), Dhanurasana (bow pose) andSarvangasana (shoulder stand pose) are good for calming the nerves.

Other practices that could help would be Pranayama (Left nostril breathing), Chandra Bhedha Pranayama (alternate nostril breathing), Bhramari Pranayama, Kumbhaka (yogic breath retention) etc. The doctor also suggests meditation and relaxation techniques.

Scientific evidences to support the practice of yoga in ADHD:

Scientific papers suggest Yoga and meditation have immeasurable benefits and are an effective and low-cost way to address needs of children with ADHD. Yoga and meditation for six weeks showed a marked improvement irrespective of the age, gender, or type of diagnosed ADHD in patients.

Studies show that more than 50 per cent of the children improved their academic performance, especially reading, as well as social and peer interactions.

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