A recent comment reminded me that many people continue to look for alternate ADD treatments or non-prescription ADHD remedies. This is not surprising considering that parent’s are especially concerned for ADHD kids that may be susceptible to some of the worst ADD medication side effects, and also considering that currently available medical treatments for ADD involve some powerful medications.
I never want to discourage someone from trying alternative ADD therapies, or a special diet for ADHD, or homeopathic or herbal supplements to help alleviate ADD symptoms. However, as is unfortunately the case everywhere, there are always some unscrupulous companies and individuals looking to take advantage of the fear that some ADHD people have by selling them overpriced or ineffective ADD medicine.
ADHD Natural Remedies
There are some natural ADD treatments that you can try for both adults with ADD and for ADHD children. None of these items or methods have been scientifically proven to help with ADD symptoms. If they had, you would be getting these treatment tips from your doctor and the medical establishment in general. However, keep in mind that “proof” is a tough standard in science and a very tough standard in medicine.
That being said, there are some ADD treatments that continue to crop up in new research studies or clinical trials. Getting these alternative ADHD treatments approved as clinical proven effective methods for treating ADD symptoms is a long process that can be set back significantly by a single unfavorable finding. These things are worth a try if for no other reason than there is no harm in doing so, and if they do work FOR YOU, then who cares if they are proven to work for everybody.
On the other hand, there are also several so-call natural cures for ADD / ADHD that are either completely unfounded, or are based on long-ago research that was never very promising, or even worse, on a mischaracterization of research, data, or trials that are not about ADD-ADHD at all.
ADD Drug Alternative Treatment Viability
How do you tell the difference between legitimate science that is promising, but not yet proven, and false marketing, fake science, and unsubstantiated claims?
For some ADHD medication alternatives, it takes an ability to wade through dozens or hundreds of pages of dry scientific research papers. It also helps if, while you were cruising through college by doing the minimum and surfing the curve before you even knew you had ADD, you were a Biochemistry major. (Guilty.)
But, for other natural remedies for ADD or herbal supplements, or whatever pills someone sticks in a bottle, you don’t need to get so complicated.
For any alternative therapy that you find to help with adult ADD for kids with ADD, I have two tests that are 99% successful at exposing scams and fraudulent claims. The good news is that these tests work for almost any vitamin formula, herbal extract, supplement, or “proprietary formula” out there.
Top 3 Ways to Spot an ADD Treatment Scam
- It Cures Everything – The original Snake Oil salesmen from history used to tout their “cure alls” by saying, “It cures what ails, ya.” What they meant was that it didn’t matter what was wrong with you or what disease you had, their elixir would make it better. Nothing, and I mean nothing, works on everything. Advil works better on certain kinds of pain than Tylenol which works better or worse than Aspirin. If the alternative treatment or natural therapy you are looking at claims to help a lot of unrelated conditions, watch out.
- Conspiracy Theories – Any treatment that says, at any time, that claims that it is the victim of “them” keeping it down, is a con. It is the best trick in the book to say that any bad press, any negative information, anything that doesn’t proclaim this great, amazing new treatment as the best thing since sliced bread is nothing more than a smear campaign, because then there can be no rebuttal since it is all just lies. Legitimate pills, treatments, supplements, or diets NEVER claim there is a conspiracy. If “they are out to get us” then run away.
- Proprietary Blend – This one is a little trickier than the other two. If you come across #1 or #2, stop researching and just move on to something else. For this one, consider it a strong warning. – Here is the deal. Chemistry is chemistry. It isn’t called dextroamphetamine because some marketing guy thought that was a good name. That is a chemical compound consisting of a certain number of hydrogen atoms, carbon atoms, oxygen atoms, etc. in a specific arrangement. Whether you make it, I make it, or Burger King puts it together if it is dextroamphetamine, then it is the exact same thing, and it will do the exact same thing in your body. In other words, 200 mg Omega-3 DHA in a brown bottle is just as good as 200 mg Omega-3 DHA in a green bottle, no matter what the bottles say. If you are researching a natural ADHD treatment that insists that it is the only one that will work, be very skeptical.
- ADD Cure – You don’t cure ADD, you manage it. Cure means that something goes away and doesn’t come back. There is no scientific evidence of any kind, not even the promising, benefit of the down kind, that suggests that ANYTHING, ANYWHERE, is a cure. If it says cure, put it back on the shelf.
What Next for ADHD Treatments?
I’ve been doing some research on Flavay which claims to be an alternative treatment for ADHD and that some parents are turning to as an alternative ADD treatment for their kids. I should have a post up in a day or two with all the details so that you can make an informed decision for yourself.