Tuesday, April 11, 2006

Environmental Triggers of ADHD

Previous studies have determined that environmental factors such as exposure to lead, substance and alcohol abuse and smoking during pregnant, an impoverished environment, malnourished, physical abuse, traumatic brain injury and seizures may be reasons for childhood behavioral problems. Research also shows that children of tobacco users face a higher risk of ADD. One study of 2,232 5 year old twins suggested that there is a connection between affection given by the other and lower rates of the disorder in those with a low birth weight. Another study done at the University of Illinois studied hyperactive children between 5-8 years and discovered tat playing outdoors can have a big positive impact. Finally, a Temple University preliminary report found that deep pressure and strenuous exercise can soothe symptoms, such as restlessness, impulsivity, and hyperactivity. Another environmental trigger is violence. In a number of surveys, it's been found that violence can also be a possible factor in hyperactivity. One survey, published in the Journal of Pediatrics, found that 90 percent of children between 4 and 6 were exposed to some form of aggression that caused a traumatic stress reaction, such as nightmares, thumb-sucking or bed wetting. Also, one third have allergies, asthma or ADHD. Investigators observed that those who had one or more of these health problems were significantly more likely to have had an encounter with excessive force. Finally, a huge number of reports have linked lack of sleep with behavioral problems. One study of 229 preschoolers showed that those who snored were four times more likely to develop new or worsened symptoms of hyperactivity four years later than those who slept well.

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