Seems the incidence of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has grown way beyond children to adults, particularly since the advent of Strattera, the newest and only FDA-approved drug available to cure it. But only at the expense of your liver… But I digress.

Always on the lookout for new natural treatments for disease, I was pleasantly surprised to read about a new and very effective non-drug option to fight ADHD. In a study of 88 children, sensory intervention — for example, deep pressure and strenuous exercise — significantly improved problem behaviors such as restlessness, impulsivity and hyperactivity. Significant, as in 95 percent of the patients tested showed improvement. (Every participant in the study also took medication for ADHD.)

Of the 88 patients, 63 of them underwent 40 one-hour sensory intervention therapy sessions, while the rest didn’t. The therapy techniques appealed to the three basic sensory systems: Tactile (the sense of touch), vestibular (controlling sensations of gravity and movement) and proprioceptive (regulating the awareness of the body in space). These individual therapy sessions were tailored to each child’s needs and involved such techniques as lightly or deeply brushing the skin, moving on swings or working with an exercise ball.

Researchers discovered these sessions put children more at ease which enabled them to better focus their attention in a noisy classroom, and more comfortably participate in family activities. Even more positive: Changes in behaviors were seen within six months.

Other natural treatments for ADHD:

EurekAlert May 16, 2005