November 7, 2010 |
Like many parents of a challenging child, I was quietly thrilled the other day to read that a study in the prestigious medical journal the Lancet reported new evidence that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, my son's main diagnosis, may have something to do with genes. "I'm off the hook!" it's so tempting to think, when hearing this kind of news. Yes, my chromosomes may be to blame, but at least I wouldn't have to keep kicking myself over the possible ramifications of that fall from the swing set when my child was a toddler, or how much pesticide residue he's accumulated in his short time on Earth, or whether my own distractedness has deprived him of the consistency and structure he so obviously needs.
September 11, 2013 |
Forget that stereotype about the dumb jock. A new study reveals that kids who are more physically fit score higher on geography tests, too. Previous research has found that out-of-shape kids get lower grades in school and perform worse on tasks involving memory and other types of cognitive function. In addition, mice that exercise have better spatial learning and memory than sedentary mice. For the new study, researchers from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign wondered whether there was a correlation between physical fitness and learning.
September 6, 2004 |
Kids with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder who have a few hours on their hands might want to consider heading to the nearest grassy park or tree-lined street. In a study of several hundred children with the disorder, researchers found that those who spent time in green, natural settings reported fewer symptoms than kids who worked on activities indoors or who took part in activities in more urban areas.
November 22, 2011 |
The brains of experienced meditators appear to be fitter, more disciplined and more "on task" than do the brains of those trying out meditation for the first time. And the differences between the two groups are evident not only during meditation, when brain scans detect a pattern of better control over the wandering mind among experienced meditators, but when the mind is allowed to wander freely. Those insights emerge from a study to be published next week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, which looked at two groups: highly experienced meditators and meditation novices, and compared the operations of the " Default Mode Network " -- a newly identified cluster of brain regions that go to work when our brains appear to be "offline.
May 20, 2013 |
Having childhood attention deficit hyperactivity disorder could lead to a life of obesity, even if ADHD symptoms disappear in adulthood, a new study shows. The study, which followed up on 207 middle-class men who had been diagnosed with ADHD as children, found that some 33 years after their diagnosis, their body mass index was significantly higher than those without ADHD. Their propensity to become obese was twice that of adults who were never diagnosed with ADHD, according to the study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.
October 1, 2010
About 3% to 7% of children 5 to 17 years old in the United States have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder , or ADHD, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC labels it "one of the most common neurobehavioral disorders of childhood. " It also breaks down ADHD into three different categories: predominantly inattentive (which was once called attention deficit disorder, or ADD), predominantly hyperactive-impulsive and combined. The Orlando Sentinel's health blog Vital Signs reports on a recent study that measured the effect of background noise on inattentive students called "A little white noise may help ADD students.
November 16, 2011 |
Medications to treat mental health disorders is soaring among U.S. adults, according to data released Wednesday by Medco Health Solutions, a pharmacy benefit manager. Twenty percent of all adults said they took at least one medication to treat a mental disorder. Among women, 25% said they took such medication and 20% said they were using an antidepressant. The survey analyzed prescription drug trends among 2.5 million insured Americans from 2001 to 2010. Medco researchers also found that adults ages 20 to 44 had the greatest uptick in use of anti-anxiety medications, atypical antipsychotics and drugs to treat ADHD.
April 2, 2012 |
Jonah Lehrer is the Los Angeles guy who writes about brains, and he has them aplenty too. He wonders how our noggins make us individually distinct, and yet how the basic factory model means that so many of our brains are wired the same. In books such as "Proust Was a Neuroscientist," Lehrer metaphorically pokes at our gray matter, and in his latest, "Imagine, How Creativity Works," considers the neuroscience of the divine spark. For my "Patt Morrison Asks" column , I questioned him about the trope that depression can stimulate creativity, which invariably leads to the hypothetical, "If we'd been able to prescribe antidepressants for the dispirited geniuses of the past, would we be deprived of their music and their art?"
April 5, 2011 |
Children and teens exposed to secondhand smoke are more likely to develop symptoms for a variety of mental health problems, including major depressive disorder, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and others, according to a study published in Tuesday’s edition of the journal Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine. At this point, it should come as no surprise to anyone that exposure to tobacco smoke is unhealthy. Plenty of studies have linked secondhand smoke to respiratory problems, asthma, sudden infant death syndrome, middle ear infections and other physical health problems.