SRS Meditation can treat ADHD

Discussion in 'On Topic' started by Peyomp, Nov 16, 2005.

  1. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn8317

    Meditation builds up the brain
    11:01 15 November 2005
    NewScientist.com news service
    Alison Motluk

    Meditating does more than just feel good and calm you down, it makes you perform better – and alters the structure of your brain, researchers have found.

    People who meditate say the practice restores their energy, and some claim they need less sleep as a result. Many studies have reported that the brain works differently during meditation – brainwave patterns change and neuronal firing patterns synchronise. But whether meditation actually brings any of the restorative benefits of sleep has remained largely unexplored.

    So Bruce O’Hara and colleagues at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, US, decided to investigate. They used a well-established “psychomotor vigilance task”, which has long been used to quantify the effects of sleepiness on mental acuity. The test involves staring at an LCD screen and pressing a button as soon as an image pops up. Typically, people take 200 to 300 milliseconds to respond, but sleep-deprived people take much longer, and sometimes miss the stimulus altogether.

    Ten volunteers were tested before and after 40 minutes of either sleep, meditation, reading or light conversation, with all subjects trying all conditions. The 40-minute nap was known to improve performance (after an hour or so to recover from grogginess). But what astonished the researchers was that meditation was the only intervention that immediately led to superior performance, despite none of the volunteers being experienced at meditation.

    “Every single subject showed improvement,” says O’Hara. The improvement was even more dramatic after a night without sleep. But, he admits: “Why it improves performance, we do not know.” The team is now studying experienced meditators, who spend several hours each day in practice.

    Brain builder

    What effect meditating has on the structure of the brain has also been a matter of some debate. Now Sara Lazar at the Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston, US, and colleagues have used MRI to compare 15 meditators, with experience ranging from 1 to 30 years, and 15 non-meditators.

    They found that meditating actually increases the thickness of the cortex in areas involved in attention and sensory processing, such as the prefrontal cortex and the right anterior insula.

    “You are exercising it while you meditate, and it gets bigger,” she says. The finding is in line with studies showing that accomplished musicians, athletes and linguists all have thickening in relevant areas of the cortex. It is further evidence, says Lazar, that yogis “aren’t just sitting there doing nothing".

    The growth of the cortex is not due to the growth of new neurons, she points out, but results from wider blood vessels, more supporting structures such as glia and astrocytes, and increased branching and connections.

    The new studies were presented at the Society for Neuroscience annual meeting, in Washington DC, US.
     
  2. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    Cliffs: The same areas of the brain that are deficient in ADHD persons are stimulated to grow through meditation. Your brain is plastic. It can change. Heal thyself.
     
  3. johan

    johan Active Member

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    fascinating! All the more reason to rock to that cosmic rhythm. AUM!
     
  4. RUchaps

    RUchaps Active Member

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  5. Midgetized

    Midgetized Don't mess with Douche Cat

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    That would be great if we could sit still long enough to do it :hsugh:
     
  6. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    HAHAHA! You CAN! Maybe not for very long. But a few minutes a day counts. Its exercise, so it gets easier the more you do. ;)
     
  7. procrastinator

    procrastinator New Member

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    What he said. I started doin it about a year ago, before I couldnt do it longer than 5 minutes or so, but I can generally do it for about 20 minutes now.

    Just gotta get myself doing it on a regular basis.
     
  8. Hootahz314

    Hootahz314 I have daddy issues

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    How would one introduce meditation to an 8 year old with ADHD? I feel extremely uncomfortable continuing with his Adderall for as long as his therapist estimated. I am willing to try anything to help him out. I feel bad medicating because, well... he's 8. The results are bittersweet for me because he does respond well, so well infact his grades have improved 4 times higher than we first thought. I just hate the fact that my baby (ahem..scuse me, my little man) is on a controlled substance that he could become addicted to.

    EDIT: I happened to just now try a quick breathing technique with him that my therapist showed me when I start feeling anxious and he SAT STILL! It only lasted 3 minutes, but I'm gonna take what I can get.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2005
  9. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    If he's improved that much, then you need to get over your medication issues and think only about HIS health. The medication is improving his life dramatically. Thats the bottom line. ADHD kids don't tend to get addicted to their meds. Thats the non-ADHD kids he'll sell them to later ;)

    As to meditation, I like the Vipassana technique. There are childrens' courses, I think, that teach the basic Anapana technique in a day or two. Check this site out, and look for the center in your area: http://www.dhamma.org/vipassan.htm

    Other than that you could find a transcendental meditation center near you, and that might work. Or you can simply learn any of these techniques yourself, and then teach them to your child.

    google://"meditation" has alot of hits.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2005
  10. GlassUser

    GlassUser send an email not a pm OT Supporter

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    So can habit and exercise. Far too much medication is a crutch.
     
  11. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    There is no indication that "habit" helps at all. In fact ADHD might to some extent be defined as the inability to establish habits. Exercise helps everything, but not ADHD in particular.

    We're talking about a direct treatment of the affected brain areas here. A treatment that physically manifests itself in brain change. Kinda like curling weight would make your biceps grow.
     
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2005
  12. Hootahz314

    Hootahz314 I have daddy issues

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    Thank you for the info! I'm going to do more research about this, because I could probably benefit from a little meditation as well. :) I really do have to get over my medicine issues. It still kind of makes me cringe to know that my kid has to have this in order to deal with everyday situations normally. I mostly just find it very unfair for him. I need to look into this addiction thing as well, because his therapist told me that Adderall was not addictive when used for it's actual purpose, but I would need to wean him off of it. His pediatrician on the other hand didn't want to even write him the prescription because he said my son would become addicted. This man also happens to be older than Jesus, so who knows.
     
  13. Reznik

    Reznik New Member

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    Is this part of the brain also responsible for emotional problems like Anxiety and Depression?
     
  14. civicmon

    civicmon got all my game from the streets of california.

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    sorta, seratonin is controlled by some little valve towards your brain stem.

    one of my docs showed me this on a cutout of a model brain.

    At least that's what the fucker told me..
     
  15. GlassUser

    GlassUser send an email not a pm OT Supporter

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    It's not habit, it's the chemistry modification from the action. You could do all sorts of different stuff with the same effect if you did it reliably.
     
  16. civicmon

    civicmon got all my game from the streets of california.

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    chemistry modification from the action?

    huh?

    I went to class for 12 years, but come college, I rarely go.

    Shouldn't my 'chemistry be modified'? :rolleyes:

    I realize it's not worth arguing with you though, you think ADHD is a bullshit made up disease, just to anyone who wants to argue with him, he did indeed say that.
     
  17. Peyomp

    Peyomp New Member

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    There is no evidence that what you are saying is true. The article states that meditation in particular is effective, and that this is reflected not just through modification of connection weights between neurons, but that the effect is strong enough to show change in physical brain structure at the macroscopic level. New synapses form, neuroglia multiply, and new blood vessels form to feed the region.

    I.e. meditation is much more effective than what you suggest. It is intense exercise for these regions of the brain.
     
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2005
  18. Johnny Sack

    Johnny Sack Penis?

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    Would I be wrong in bumping this? Seems like a lot of people could use this article to their advantage - I know I have.
     
  19. Falconer

    Falconer OT Supporter

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    I read the title as "Medication can..."
     
  20. BradUF

    BradUF Guest

    This is much better the medication.
     
  21. busydoingnothing

    busydoingnothing A broken man too tough to cry

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    I just finished reading the book "The Relaxation Response" which talks about the scientifically measurable effects of daily meditation and gives an outline on how to achieve it. It's a pretty quick read; I just need to start actually doing it.
     

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