Yoga and mindfulness techniques effective for reducing ADHD complications

Among children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), yoga and mindfulness techniques are effective at reducing complications, a study by Ural Federal University found.

Researchers conducted their study on 16 children diagnosed with ADHD, aged 6 to 7, examining the effects of yoga fitness on functions associated with voluntary regulation and control.

Their results were published online in Biological Psychiatry.

“For children with ADHD, as a rule, the part of the brain that is responsible for the regulation of brain activity – the reticular formation – is deficient,” according to Sergey Kiselev, the study’s lead author. “This leads to the fact that they often experience states of inadequate hyperactivity, increased distraction and exhaustion, and their functions of regulation and control suffer a second time.”

“We used a special breathing exercise based on the development of diaphragmatic rhythmic deep breathing – belly breathing. Such breathing helps to better supply the brain with oxygen and helps the reticular formation to better cope with its role. When the reticular formation receives enough oxygen, it begins to better regulate the child’s state of activity,” Kiselev added.

The study highlights the use of breathing exercises, along with yoga, for reducing complications associated with ADHD in children.

“This technique was developed by the Russian neuropsychologist Anna Semenovich as part of a neuropsychological correction technique. UrFU psychologists tested how well this approach helps children with ADHD,” a news release of the results noted.

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