The Parent's Hyperactivity Handbook: Helping the Fidgety Child

By David M. Paltin | Go to book overview

Chapter 4

What Causes ADHD
in Children?

To know how to treat ADHD, we must understand what causes it. In this chapter, we will explore three groups of explanations that are the most likely causes or contributing factors to ADHD. Brain deficit models suggest that ADHD is caused by problems in the brain's functioning. Mimicry models suggest that ADHD is not a brain problem at all but that allergies and reactions to sugar mimic ADHD symptoms. Finally, social explanations suggest that ADHD is due to problems in the social and educational environment rather than to problems within the child. By reading this chapter, you will have a much clearer understanding of what your child is dealing with, making your decisions about medication, counseling, and diet much easier.


Minimal Brain Dysfunction and
Other Deficit Explanations

Early researchers working with attention deficit and hyperactivity problems in the 1940s and 1950s felt there was some physical process, some problem in brain functioning, that was a root cause of the symptoms they saw in children. The symptoms

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