5 Surprising Causes of ADD Symptoms by AmenClinics

Outside of genetic predisposition, poor diet, and lack of exercise, there are a variety of reasons why ADD symptoms may arise in children, adults, and even the elderly.

Below are 5 of the most common factors that are often overlooked.

1. Head Injury

One of the most common (and most overlooked) causes of ADD symptoms is long-forgotten or unrecognized head injury, especially to the front part of the brain. In our experience, many professionals and parents underestimate the impact of head injuries, assuming that a person needs to have a significant loss of consciousness for a prolonged period of time in order for it to do damage. Our brain imaging work, along with the work of others, is disproving this notion.


2. Lack of Oxygen or Toxic Exposure

Lack of oxygen causes a decrease in overall brain activity while brain infections, such as meningitis or encephalitis, cause toxic inflammation in the brain, damage tissue, and impair healthy blood flow.

Exposure to mold, pesticides, lead, mercury, intrauterine smoking, and other toxins have also been linked to various neurodevelopmental disorders. This factor is very important to understand and evaluate, as a different approach, including a biomedical evaluation, is often warranted.


3. Medical Problems & Medications

Certain medical problems, such as hydrocephalus (water on the brain) and thyroid disease can look like ADD. Likewise, certain medications can make people look and feel hyperactive and/or inattentive.

Related: ADHD At Age 76: SPECT Revealed More

4. Depression & Anxiety

Many symptoms of depression and anxiety are also found in ADD, so history is the key to proper diagnosis and treatment. ADD symptoms are generally constant over time, while depression and anxiety tend to fluctuate. Unfortunately, many people with ADD experience chronic anxiety and develop depressive symptoms due to the constant demoralization that goes with having ADD.

Related: When Depression and ADD Intersect

5. Hormonal Factors

Hormones play a major role in ADD, and symptoms are generally worse around the time of puberty in both males and females. In females, ADD symptoms are often worsened during the pre-menstrual period and also around the time of menopause.

Laughter as Brain MedicineBy AmenClinics

Laughter is wonderful medicine for your brain and body.

  • When you watch a funny movie, the blood flow to your heart increases.
  • Laughter releases endorphins, which helps lower pain and counteract the effects of stress hormones.
  • Laughter also boosts the immune system and reduces inflammation.

Laughter can also help you live longer!

One Norwegian study showed that:

  • Those with a sense of humor outlived those who didn’t find life funny (the survival edge was particularly large for people with cancer).
  • Adults who scored in the top quarter for humor appreciation were 35% more likely to be alive than those in the bottom quarter.
  • In a subgroup of folks who had a cancer diagnosis at the start, a great sense of humor cut their chances of death by about 70% compared with adults with a poor sense of humor.

Becky Johnson, a witty author and friend of mine, whose new humor memoir, We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook (co-authored with her daughter) may give your brain a happy boost through literary laughter therapy.

Becky is also a good friend of The Amen Clinic, and even wrote about her experience getting a brain scan!

In the book, Becky writes, “A few years ago, I had a brain scan done at the Amen Clinic. The good news is, contrary to urban myth, I do have a brain! In fact, according to Dr. Amen… I have “a beautiful brain.” On my brain scan, however, there is what appears to be a dent in my forehead. This is not an actual hole in my head, but an indication that blood flow is in not hurry to infuse my prefrontal cortex with thinking fluid. The result is that I’ve gone through my entire life with something called Inattentive ADD. It basically means that, though I am a bright and creative thinker, I am simultaneously ditzy and absentminded, at least when it comes to remembering things like time and appointments and where I put my glasses, or getting jokes, which mostly fly over my head at the speed of light.”

Becky once told me, “Having a sense of humor has helped me not to take myself too seriously. And being funny has helped my loved ones to see me as more endearing than irritating. Sometimes it feels like there is a classroom of Kindergarteners in my brain, all doing their own thing. Jumping on chairs, hollering out the window, coloring on the walls. This product helps bring the class-in-my head to order, and gives me the ability to focus on one project at a time and get it done.”

Laughter helps you learn.

One of the reasons I use humor in my presentations is to help people relax, because when we are relaxed and laughing, your ability to learn and absorb information increases. Try lowering your stress with some funny movies, or grab a copy of We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook and enjoy some chuckles.

Know Your ADD Type – Take Dr. Amen’s Free Questionnaire! By AmenClinics

We understand that not everyone can make it into one of our clinics for treatment, so it’s very important that we extend our support to you and your family in every way possible.

If you think that you or a loved may have ADD, take Dr. Amen’s new online questionnaire to learn more. After determining your type, you will receive a full, comprehensive report including an ADD Action Plan with natural and targeted treatments that you can start from home.

Did you know that there are multiple types of ADD and that one treatment does not fit everyone? When ADD is misdiagnosed, left untreated — or worse — treated improperly . . . it can ruin your life:

  • According to one study from Harvard, 52% of untreated people abuse drugs or alcohol.
  • 33% of untreated teens never finish high school – 3 times the national average – so they end up in jobs that do not pay well.
  • Parents of ADD children divorce 3 times more often than the general population.

Having raised 3 ADD kids, I know that there can be a lot of love in ADD families, but there can also be a lot of chaos, frustration, and tears.

Having ineffectively treated ADD is also very expensive as people go from doctor to doctor and try multiple medications, which often do more harm than good.

But it doesn’t have to be this way!

I’ll tell you why…

Using a functional brain imaging study called SPECT, my colleagues and I have literally looked at the brain activity of tens of thousands of people with ADD.

This is what we have discovered and what you need to know:

  • There are 7 distinct types of ADD- not just the simple types: ADD and ADHD.
  • Not everyone with ADD is hyperactive.
  • Treating 5 of the 7 types with stimulant medication alone usually makes things worse.
  • Specific, targeted treatments exist for each type.

We’ve seen thousands of transformational stories and have effective solutions –many of which are natural and lifestyle methods that can be started from home– to dramatically improve you and your loved one’s lives in a short period of time.

If you believe that ADD is affecting you or a loved one, there are 3 steps to take today:

  1. Know whether you or your loved one is likely to have ADD.
  2. Learn which type (or types) may be present.
  3. Discover the right types of treatment, targeted to your specific ADD brain type.