ADD & ADHD

Symptoms by body part:

Frontal Sinus/Cranium (Head)
Inattention
Lack of Focus
Spatial Orientation defecit

What is ADD/ADHD?

ADD (attention deficit disorder) is the widely recognized term for what is really a subtype of the disorder known as ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), which is comprised of three different subtypes.  ADHD types 1,2 and 3 are developmental disorder that occur as the result of an imbalance between the right and left hemispheres of the brain, in particular a deficiency/weakness of the right brain compared to the left.  This often occurs as the result of a delay in maturation of particular areas of the brainstem and right cortex during normal development or as the result of injury to the right hemisphere of the brain which causes a delay in functioning on that side.  Many times people get confused about the terms ADD/ADHD because they believe them to be two completely different conditions; however they are all related to the same right cortical imbalances but at differing degrees/with a different number of affected pathways, which is what distinguishes them from one another.    

There are three forms of ADHD:

  • ADHD Type 1: Inattentive type (commonly known as ADD)
  • ADHD Type 2: Hyperactive type
  • ADHD Type 3: Combined type (commonly known simply as ADHD)

What Causes It?

There is no single known cause of ADHD, however there are common factors that are apparent in those who have ADHD due to the imbalance between the right and left hemispheres, oftentimes evident from infancy. 

Common signs of ADHD in addition to inattention and/or hyperactivity:

  • Curiosity, impulsiveness
  • Lack of fear, lack of inhibition
  • Difficulty with non-verbal communication (eye contact, facial expression)
  • Excellent verbal communication
  • Difficulty with reading comprehension, but excellent word reading
  • Difficulty with math reasoning (geometry, word problems), but excellent algebraic skills
  • Difficulty carrying out tasks, but great at planning them
  • Difficulty with seeing the big picture
  • Difficulty with spatial awareness (being aware of the world around them)
  • Very happy, outgoing
  • Poor gross motor control (large muscle groups)
  • Prefers routine, sameness, familiarity, difficulty with new things

How Do We Treat It?

Through careful examination by Maine’s only Chiropractic Neurology team, (which includes not only physical examination but a thorough review of birth, infancy, mother’s history during pregnancy, family history, as well as any relevant information up to the day of the examination), we are able to determine the areas of the brain, brainstem, vestibular system and cerebellum that are deficient and form a treatment plan that is specific to you and your condition.  Treatment may consist of chiropractic adjustments specifically targeted to increase rates of firing in the right cortical hemisphere in addition to functional neurologic therapy which consists of a variety of optokinetic/eye movement exercises, balance and control work, right brain stimulating physical exercises, right brain stimulating music and light therapy, tracing/pointing therapy, among various other forms of right cortical rehabilitative exercises.   In addition, it is also important that the patient and their family be actively involved in their own care, by adhering to home exercises which will be prescribed by the doctor.  These exercises are extremely important in making the appropriate changes and doing so in a more efficient time frame.