Behavior and anxiety disorders among children are at an all-time high. A recent study revealed that attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in kids has become more common over the past twenty years, with an increase from 6.1 percent in 1997 to 10.2 percent in 2016 – that’s over 6 million kids between 2-17 years! This is the “new normal,” but this is NOT normal.
Behavior & Development
Mercury is a toxic heavy metal and it’s everywhere: in the fish we eat, the air we breathe, the water we drink, the products we use, and the amalgam fillings on our teeth!
Its toxicity is insidious, accumulating in the body over time, and for some is the underlying cause of such chronic conditions as anxiety, depression, irritability, digestive issues, food allergies, insomnia, tremors, etc.
It’s completely natural for parents to lose patience with emotionally erratic toddlers. However, according to this ZERO TO THREE National Parent Survey, parental frustration during this phase can stem from significantly overestimating the age at which children master skills of self-control, creating what is called an “expectation gap.”
As natural medicine pediatricians we can’t overstate how critical good nutrition is for building healthy bodies and brains. However, we also recognize that hectic lifestyles and the convenience of packaged foods are real-life challenges to feeding your kids unprocessed, whole foods.
Sleep is something that everyone needs. It is essential to restoring our bodies. Why then can it be so difficult to get children to sleep well?
Most parents worry about their child’s quality and quantity of sleep at some point and many get roped into elaborate bedtime routines that seem like they can take as long as the sleep itself. What I as a parent have found both among the families I work with and with my own kids is that some children are just genetically great sleepers. Now of course it isn’t all genetics. The habits parents instill are also really important.
Today is my 101st consecutive day of meditation, and I feel astonishingly good. I feel calm, alert, and super smart. Amazing, right? Most importantly, I don’t feel anxious.
The constantly looping, stomping, and crashing parade of worries and what-ifs disbanded and left my mind about a week ago. Only a few of the more reasonable concerns remain, and they’re cool. They’re sitting down and hanging out quietly until I choose to deal with them.
In our last case study, Could Gluten be to Blame for Your Child’s Behavioral Issues?, we shared Kasey’s story – she is a patient from our San Francisco practice who came to us for help with an ADHD and anxiety disorder diagnosis. As the title suggests, we were able to link Kasey’s behavioral issues to a gluten sensitivity. But it turns out that gluten was only partially to blame.
The current generation is the first whose lifespans will be shorter than their parents’, and the incidence of chronic illness is to blame. Some statistics claim that 1 in 3 children have a chronic illness diagnosis with obesity, Type 2 diabetes, asthma, life-threatening allergies, Celiac disease, autism and ADHD leading the charge. These conditions have skyrocketed in just 30 years – and will only continue to climb.
In our previous post, “Magnesium: The Wonder Mineral,” we praised magnesium as a key ingredient for keeping us physically and emotionally balanced. To recap, magnesium is a “co-enzyme” for over 300 fundamental biochemical reactions in our bodies – meaning these critical biological processes could not occur without the help of magnesium.
Some kids simply can’t tolerate gluten and that can manifest in different ways. The array of complaints can include, but aren’t limited to, stomach aches and other digestive issues, nasal congestion, headaches, itchy/watery eyes, skin rashes, and mood complaints such as anxiety or depression. It’s also becoming more and more apparent, especially among functional medicine pediatricians, that a gluten sensitivity can negatively impact a child’s behavior.