Listeners from last week’s webinar sent in several great questions: I can’t answer all of them in depth but I will summarize the key themes and try to address them. One big theme concerned adults with ADHD and the heart of these questions was:
- Should adults do anything different or try the same stuff that seems to work for kids?
- How good is the evidence for different lifestyle factors for adults?
- How does inflammation, and hormones, and lifestyle all interact with medication?
Overall, we have a lot less information about adults with ADHD, but that doesn’t mean we can’t make some headway right now. We do know that because the brain and body mature all the way into our 20’s, the biochemistry of ADHD and response to medications and other interventions is somewhat different for adults. But that said, there’s enough evidence to know that the basic proof in adult animals, in developing animals, and in human children gives us quite a bit of confidence for adults in trying the recommended lifestyle changes, particularly around exercise and healthy diet. Adults, unlike children with ADHD, can also benefit more from cognitive coping strategies (mindfulness meditation, reframing, and so on). (Children and teens much more require their parents to do that for them or with them). Also, for adults there is more evidence of benefit from getting training or coaching in organizational skills and executive functions. One good book there is “Smart But Scattered” by Peg Dawson, Guilford Press. It is notable that several of you wrote in to note your own experiences with, particularly, reducing inflammation in your diet.
I will write more as I continue to gradually digest the email messages coming in. Thank you for your interest in trustworthy, science based updates.
My next webinar September 20th – Beyond Genes: How Sleep, Diet & Exercise Impact a Child’s ADHD
Good health to you all,