Posts tagged ‘Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari’

Return of School Problems for ADHD Children?

I was speaking with the mother of several school age children recently (one with ADHD), and she gave voice to a feeling I suspect many mothers have. “The kids are back in school, Thank God; I love my kids-but I need a little time at home alone to regroup…….. The kids are back in school. Oh my God! We’re going to start having all those school struggles with Alex again!” Does this sound familiar?

Many parents may have felt optimistic that with summer school, some tutoring, or because it’s a new year and the child is older, that this year would be an entirely new experience. Unfortunately, for most kids with ADHD, this is not the case. Individuals with ADHD have a unique handicap. It is a neurological disorder that, if untreated, will usually persist throughout life, typically creating significant difficulties in school, the workplace, and in relationships.

The classroom environment- with its particular emphasis on organization, schedules, and assignments, long periods of desk work, and emphasis on writing and math- are usually places where children with ADHD have significant difficulty. Furthermore, they take longer to complete in-class and homework assignments. They can quickly become overwhelmed, rebellious, and discouraged, and can “turn off” to the idea of learning.

Some children with ADHD also have behavior difficulties and/or may become isolated, or have difficulty forming friendships. These problems, combined with the aforementioned performance difficulties, often add up to the child developing a self-image of being “not to smart” (tragically incorrect, most people with ADHD have a higher than average intelligence), and/or being a “trouble-maker”. Unfortunately, as we all tend to live out our self-images, the longer this is allowed to exist, the stronger and greater the problems become. It is therefore critical to correct this situation immediately.

Solution:

The solution to this problem is to correct the disorder.Many parents, unfortunately, deny the existence of the disorder, or choose to not get help for their child because they fear the side effects, and rigors of medication (life-long treatment).There is, however, an alternative to this scenario.Neurofeedback is a highly effective, drug free, safe, non-invasive and painless procedure in which the student learns to correct the problem.Once training is complete, no further treatment is necessary.

Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari
Alta Neuro-Imaging Neurofeedback
1075 Yorba Place
Suite 105
Placentia, CA 92870
714.990.6536
Website: www.ocbiofeedback.com

September 12, 2008 at 1:39 am Leave a comment

AD/HD and Serious Behavior Problems

There are three types of AD/HD (ADD), primarily Inattentive, Hyperactive-Impulsive, and Combined. In individuals with Hyperactive-Impulsive and the Combined forms, anti-social behavior is, unfortunately, common. Approximately 60% of these individuals maybe oppositional or defiant, many end up in trouble with the law.

These difficulties are rooted in the neurological imbalances, which cause AD/HD (which in most cases can be corrected through neurological retraining, without the use of drugs). The results of these imbalances are that these individuals tend to typically be less content and peaceful, impulsively act-out, and crave the stimulation of anti-social behaviors. Furthermore, the impulsivity causes these activities to be less carefully planned, and they are more easily caught.

Teenagers with these forms of the disorder average two arrests by the age of 18. Approximately 20% of these teenagers will be arrested for a felony, compared to only 3% of teens without the disorder. Recent data shows that as many as 50% of all teens in juvenile facilities have AD/HD, but were untreated for it, and a full 70% of men in prisons in California have AD/HD and were untreated for it as children.

Teens with these types of the disorder have 400% more traffic tickets related to speeding, than teenagers without it. Twice as many of these teenagers will run away from home (with the added increased likelihood of further bad choices, once away from home) than teens without the disorder. Arson is also often associated with AD/HD, teenagers with untreated AD/HD are three times more likely to be arrested for arson than those without the disorder.

Teenagers untreated as children for AD/HD are ten times more likely to get pregnant, or to cause a pregnancy, than those without AD/HD. Teens untreated for this disorder are
also 400% more likely to contract a sexually transmitted than teens without AD/HD.
Often AD/HD students will have difficulty with certain interactions on a regular basis: difficulty in taking turns, misinterpreting others’ remarks as overly hostile, personalizing others’ remarks actions excessively, and misreading social cues.

Correcting the Disorder

In addition to the above-mentioned problems, there are a host of other difficulties associated with AD/HD. Tragically this disorder often goes undetected, or when detected, untreated, due to parents’ fear of the unwanted significant side effects of medication, which they may think are their only treatment option.

As we mentioned earlier, the neurological imbalances, which cause all forms of this disorder, can be retrained, alleviating the condition. Neurofeedback is a drug free, safe, non-invasive and painless procedure in which the patient learns to retrain these processes. Once training is completed, no further treatment is necessary.

Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari
Alta Neuro-Imaging Neurofeedback
1075 Yorba Place
Suite 105
Placentia, CA 92870
714.990.6536
Website: www.ocbiofeedback.com

April 30, 2008 at 10:04 pm Leave a comment

“Running Out of Gas” in School

About this time of year (if it hasn’t happened already), children with ADHD (ADD) begin to “run out of gas” at school. They are past the high point of Christmas, summer seems a long way off, and they’ve been working at school for over six months. After all, they’re kids. Often, they start to struggle and misbehave, and grades can decline.

This dilemma can become catastrophic for students with ADHD. They have been “running” much harder to keep up than their classmates have, and consequently are much more worn out than they are. An additional problem is the “foundation problem”, which refers to the tiered or sequential nature of education. As children move throughout the course of the school year, and progress from year to year, new concepts and understandings are built on the foundations of the previous ones. ADD often causes children to miss some of the key concepts of subjects. Then, when the teacher moves on to the next concept or set of facts, the child struggles with comprehening the new ideas because they are based on the previous ones, which they didn’t fully understand in the first place. This problem is of cumulative nature, and as school progresses, the lack of understanding increases and becomes overwhelming. Also increasing are the frustration, loss of confidence, and motivation… equally powerful in sabotaging the child’s success at school.

What makes matters worse are that these school programs may influence other areas of life, such as friendships and family life. Furthermore, the parents working with the child becomes exhausted too. This causes further “snow-balling” problems for the child and other members of the family!

The final piece of this dilemma is that at certain times in the education process, the teaching style, responsibility required of the student, or level of thinking required, take a big step up in difficulty. This may occur at fairly standard intervals, such as first, third, and sixth grade, middle school, high school, and college. But, with the increasing diversity in school programs and curriculum, it’s hard to know when these transitions will occur. This is often “the straw that breaks the camel’s back” for children with ADD.

Solution:
The solution is to correct the disorder. Unfortunately, many parents deny the existence of the disorder, or choose to not get help for their child because they fear the side effects and/or rigors of medication. There is, however, an alternative. Neurofeedback is a highly effective, drug-free, safe, non-invasive, and painless procedure in which the student learns to correct the problem. Once training is complete, no further treatment is necessary.

Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari
Alta Neuro-Imaging Neurofeedback
1075 Yorba Place
Suite 105
Placentia, CA 92870
714.990.6536
Website: www.ocbiofeedback.com

April 16, 2008 at 9:39 pm Leave a comment

Children With ADD Often Suffer Rejection – Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari

The development and maintenance of healthy peer relationships is critical for the normal development of a child. The nature of peer relationships in children has been shown to be a critical element of a child’s psychological health, and an important predictor of positive adult adjustment and behavior. Difficulty in finding friends leads to feelings of low self-esteem and these feelings usually continue into adulthood. Children with poor socials skills are at risk for delinquency, poor academic achievement, and school drop out.

Approximately 70% of children with ADD (AD/HD) suffer from peer rejection; they are less likely to be chosen as best friends, activity and sports partners, or seat mates. What’s worse is that as these children grow older, the social problems seem to get worse. Their inappropriate behavior leads to further social rejection and heightens their inability to relate to others appropriately. Long term these children are more likely to have difficulty finding and maintaining successful careers. As social aptitude can make or break careers and relationships in the adult world, this is not surprising.

Causes of Rejection

There are several types of ADD symptoms (the symptoms of ADD vary between children), let’s take a look at how these can cause rejection.

Inattention Children who have difficulty sustaining attention become bored more easily than other children. As a result, they are more likely to become disruptive in the classroom, which can generate negative responses from the teacher and their peers. ADD children have difficulty in modulating their behavior as social situations change. Their inattention makes it likely that they will miss subtle interpersonal cues, such as tone of voice and facial expression, and therefore react inappropriately. Furthermore, they have apparent social-cognitive deficits that limit their ability to encode and recall rules of social conduct. Many children with ADD are aware that they are socially inept, are therefore anxious or fearful about peer relations, and withdraw from peer interactions. This only worsens the problem.

Hyperactivity-Impulsivity Children who are hyperactive, impulsive and/or aggressive are involved in more interrupting and fighting. They are more intense than others, and are more likely to yell, run around, and talk excessively or inappropriately (hyperactivity-impulsivity tends to be verbal in girls). They also tend to dominate play, engage in off-task behaviors, and in more teasing and physical jostling of peers. These behaviors set up a process of rejection. As other children with similar difficulties often find themselves rejected too, they often associate with each other, and this leads to further problems.

Conclusion

Helping children with ADD build close beneficial peer relationships is an important goal that is often overlooked. You as a parent have the ability to help your child accomplish this important social goal. However, many parents, often as a result of a fear of the unwanted side-effects and dependencies of drugs, choose to do nothing. There is, fortunately, an alternative to this scenario. Neurofeedback is a non-drug, painless, side-effect free procedure in which the child learns to retrain the attention mechanisms of the brain, alleviating the condition. Once treatment is complete, no further training is necessary.

To request information on the treatment of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD, ADHD), Mild to Moderate Autism Spectrum Disorders, Sleep Disorders, Chronic Depression, Chronic Anxiety, and Peak Performance Training contact:

Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari
Alta Neuro-Imaging Neurofeedback
1075 Yorba Place
Suite 105
Placentia, CA 92870
714.990.6536
Website: www.ocbiofeedback.com

February 1, 2008 at 7:45 pm Leave a comment

Early Treatment of ADD Arrests Worsening of Learning and Behavior Problems – Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari

The degree of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) present in a person, unless treated, usually remains relatively stable throughout their lives. However, to most people, the disorder appears to get worse as the years go by, especially while in school or advancing in a career. The reason for this lies in three important factors.

First, as each advancing school year increases in the intellectual and behavioral demands it makes on the student, the attention and /or behavior problems caused by this disorder become more and more apparent.

Secondly, each school year builds on the foundation of the preceding years. If a child’s attention and/or behavioral problems interfere with the learning of this foundational material, it becomes increasingly difficult, each year, to master the required material. Tutoring may help, however, that learning is also hampered by this disorder, and it is often a catch-up effort that never quite manages to sufficiently fill the gap.

Finally, and in some ways most importantly, is the matter of self-image. The child who suffers under these deficits usually forms a self-image of being “not too smart” (the opposite is true, most children with ADD have a higher than average intelligence) and/or a “trouble-maker”. Children (as well as adults) have a tendency to “act out” or to fulfill their self-image. The longer they live under that self-image the stronger it becomes, and performance and behavior often deteriorate accordingly.

These same factors usually apply to job and carrier advancement, and come to bear significantly in forming and maintaining adult relationships as well.

Since all of these elements can make the problem worse with each passing year, if your child, or a child you know has or is suspected of having ADD the sooner they are evaluated and/or treated the better.

One method of treatment is neurofeedback, an effective, drug free, painless procedure in which the child learns to re-train the attention mechanisms of their brain, alleviating the condition. Once training is completed, no further treatment is necessary.

To request information on the treatment of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD, ADHD), Mild to Moderate Autism Spectrum Disorders, Sleep Disorders, Chronic Depression, Chronic Anxiety, and Peak Performance Training contact:

Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari
Alta Neuro-Imaging Neurofeedback
1075 Yorba Place
Suite 105
Placentia, CA 92870
714.990.6536
Website: www.ocbiofeedback.com

January 28, 2008 at 4:59 am Leave a comment

Notes Sent Home From The Teacher – Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari

 

It is rarely good news when your child’s teacher sends home a note for the parents. As you reluctantly open this note (often not the first from this teacher), a number of thoughts run through your mind (usually of the “oh no, not again” variety).

There are a number of ways to respond to this note. Unfortunately common, but unproductive are to become angry at the child, ignore the note, or blame the teacher (possibly, but not the most likely cause). There are, fortunately, a number of very good, productive ways to respond.

  1. Calmly share the note with your child, get their input.
  2. Thank the teacher (some will not take the time to tell parents until it’s too late), clarify the problem, tell them of your efforts, and get their advice.
  3. Share this information with your child.
  4. If unsure of child’s motivation, provide consistent, immediate, significant rewards for improvements verified by the teacher (rewards are 8 times more effective than punishments, and there is no anger or resentment).

If these efforts are unsuccessful, consider that the problems are due to a deeper cause.

First check to see if your child understands what is being taught. If not, consider vision and hearing problems, and or tutoring. Consider emotional problems at home or school. If these conditions do not seem to be present, the problem may be Attention Deficit Disorder (often referred to by schools as a “Learning Disorder”).

Some of the comments, which may be present in a teacher’s notes to parents or progress reports, which may indicate ADD, are:

  • Trouble paying attention
  • Blurts out answers
  • Loses school supplies
  • Impatient
  • Trouble finishing classwork
  • Always on the go
  • Forgets to turn in homework
  • Talks too much and has difficulty playing quietly
  • Doesn’t listen
  • Fidgets or squirms

There are two effective forms of treatment for this disorder, medication and neurofeedback. Medication is often effective, however, there are frequently unwanted side effects and this treatment is usually life-long. Neurofeedback is an effective alternative to medication.

To request information on the treatment of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD, ADHD), Mild to Moderate Autism Spectrum Disorders, Sleep Disorders, Chronic Depression, Chronic Anxiety, and Peak Performance Training contact:

Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari
Alta Neuro-Imaging Neurofeedback
1075 Yorba Place
Suite 105
Placentia, CA 92870
714.990.6536
Website: www.ocbiofeedback.com

January 24, 2008 at 5:10 pm Leave a comment

ADD: Common in Girls Too Often overlooked by teachers and parents – Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari

The stereotype most of us have of ADD (or ADHD) is a boy, running around the classroom (or the house), disrupting the class, as well as his own learning. As with most stereotypes, this image does more harm than good, and in fact, causes more than half of the cases of ADD to be missed. There are three sub types of ADD; inattentive, hyperactive-impulsive, and the combined form.

The stereotype referred to above obviously does not include the quietly underachieving, underestimated (inattentive type) boy with ADD. What is even more of a problem is it leaves out girls entirely.

For years, it was believed that only boys suffered from ADD. However, a growing body of research -and a greater awareness on the part of parents, teachers and doctors – is finding that ADD is quite common among girls too.

Part of this shift in recognizing this disorder in girls is societal, and part is due to a growing appreciation of symptom manifestation differences. As our society has become more equal (less sexist) in terms of expectations for both boys and girls, under achievement in girls is, thankfully, becoming less acceptable. We now know that, individual differences aside, boys and girls possess equal capabilities for learning and performance in most categories. Therefore, the inattentive (unfortunately, sometimes referred to as “scatterbrained” or “flighty”) girl deserves just as much attention and help as her male counterpart, regardless of the subject matter.

The second part of the problem is symptom manifestation differences. Girls tend (not always) to manifest hyperactivity-impulsivity verbally. Excessive and inappropriate talking is often the female equivalent to a boy’s more physical hyperactivity-impulsivity. A secondary symptom of ADD can sometimes be depression. Girls with ADD can have a hard time reading social clues (boys too). They can be disliked because they are socially aggressive and disruptive. Inattentive girls become socially isolated. Girls tend to internalize performance, behavior, and social problems more readily than boys. Therefore, these problems easily become things that are “wrong” with them, and this often results in depression. Many girls with ADD are misdiagnosed with depression, and to make matters worse, the ADD goes untreated.

These unequal and unfair social misconceptions, and symptom differences tend to, unfortunately, cause under diagnosis among girls still today. However, the problem is being corrected as more parents and professionals shed the misleading stereotypes and evaluate the difficulties these girls are having.  An equal opportunity for all the help we can give them is what they truly deserve.

One such method of treatment is neurofeedback, an effective, drug free, painless procedure in which the patient learns to retrain the attention mechanisms of the brain, alleviating the condition. Once training is completed, no further treatment is necessary.

To request information on the treatment of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD, ADHD), Mild to Moderate Autism Spectrum Disorders, Sleep Disorders, Chronic Depression, Chronic Anxiety, and Peak Performance Training contact:

Dr. Stephen A. Ferrari
Alta Neuro-Imaging Neurofeedback
1075 Yorba Place
Suite 105
Placentia, CA 92870
714.990.6536
Website: www.ocbiofeedback.com

January 24, 2008 at 6:11 am Leave a comment

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