It is estimated that 3-5 percent of children in the United States have been diagnosed with either attention deficit disorder (ADD) or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the main symptoms of which are hyperactivity, lack of concentration, impulsiveness, and bad behavior. In my experience, several homeopathic remedies work well on children who grapple with these issues. Here are just a few, along with descriptions of specific symptoms for which they're indicated.
Nux vomica: For children who are hyperactive; sensitive to sounds, odors, and bright lights; and tend to have gastrointestinal problems. They are intelligent, robust, and fast thinkers. They can be prone to rivalries and jealousies, easy to anger, and are often irritable. They like to be leaders, and are competitive about grades and sports.
Gallicum-acidum: For those who are hyperactive, very jealous, and willing to do almost anything to get attention. They tend to be rude and abusive, don't sleep well, and don't like to sleep alone. They are very restless at night, sweat a lot, and are often afraid to be alone at night.
Phosphorus: Indicated for children who are friendly and open. They will talk to strangers, no matter how many times they're warned not to. They are sympathetic and curious. They like to be around others and fear being alone. They may also be afraid of ghosts, and sometimes feel that they can hear things. They are very bubbly and like to act out or be the class clown.
Tuberculinum bovinum kent: For extremely restless kids who can't sit in one place for too long and have difficulty concentrating and studying. They can be destructive and malicious, are often angry, and may do things-such as breaking a sibling's favorite toy-just to hurt someone else. They love going to new places and are easily bored, and their moods are changeable. You never know what you're going to get.
Zincum metallicum: For the mentally overstimulated, hyperactive, and very sensitive. They have racing thoughts, and a lot of ideas, and they can be quite loquacious. They are hard to please and easily dissatisfied.
Cuprum Metallicum: For aggressive children known to bite, spit, or hit. They have a piercing shriek when upset, and don't like people approaching them-often fearing they will be attacked. These children are nervous, have fixed ideas, and are often extremely stubborn.
Hyoscyamus Niger: For children who display exhibitionist behavior-they like to be naked and may often touch themselves, unaware of their behavior. They also have lots of anger, and will strike, fight, or bite others. They may mutter to themselves and laugh hysterically. Will pick at clothing, or parts of their body such as fingers or lips. They have a manic personality, and can be extremely suspicious of others.
These are just a few of the remedies that can help alleviate symptoms of ADD and ADHD. If one of them seems like a fit, try a 30c dosage. But remember that there are more to try if you don't see an exact match to your child's behavior. It's best to work with a qualified homeopath to develop a course of treatment based on individual needs. To find a licensed homeopath in your area, visit homeopathycenter.org.
Why Kids Need Omega-3s Too
Kids need omega-3 fatty acids for optimal brain development and immune system health. But many little ones fail to get enough of these critical fats from diet alone, which is why supplements are important. Omega-3 supplements have been shown to improve behavior, mood, and attention span in both kids and adolescents. And a recent study in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology found that omega-3 fatty acids help to boost attention span among boys age 8-14-whether or not they had ADD or ADHD.
How can you get your kids to eat omega-3s? Try adding ground flaxseeds or flaxseed oil to smoothies, oatmeal, salad dressings, or cooked vegetables. Flavored fish oil liquids, emulsions, or gummies are another popular (and tasty) option. Chia seeds can be added to nut butters, sprinkled on salads, mixed into yogurt or oatmeal, and added to smoothies.
Try these Chia Ice Pops!
For supplements, always use a product that is designed for kids and follow the manufacturer's instructions for dosage.
Dr. King's Natural Medicine Mental Calm contains Phosphorus, along with other remedies indicated for hyperactivity, difficulty reading and writing, and lack of focus.
Intelligence Tree Botanicals Nuro-Focus was created as an alternative to prescription drugs for ADD. Flax-seed oil and a blend of herbs help enhance focus, memory, and behavior in kids.
Newton Homeopathics for Kids Hypercalm ~ Mental Focus is designed to address poor concentration, irritability, impulsivity, and disruptive behavior. It includes Nux vomica.