What is going on in the brains of people who are diagnosed with ADHD? Is there really something occurring inside the head of an ADHD sufferer? Research reveals that there is actually quite a lot going on in the ADHD brain. In this short article, the acronym ADHD includes ADD as well.
Research shows that specific parts of the brain are impacted by ADHD. The frontal lobes, cortex, limbic system, and reticular activating system, are all included. The frontal lobes are, as the name implies, in the front of the brain behind the forehead. This area is vital in concentration, the ability to make sound choices, learn, and remember.
The frontal lobe also helps you pay attention to a task, and seeing it to conclusion. Further, regular frontal lobes play a function in situation-appropriate behavior and emotional impulse control. Studies and imagery have shown that slow brain wave activity across the frontal lobes is correlative with ADHD symptoms and medical diagnosis.
The cortex, or more specifically, the inhibitory systems of the cortex, are sort of like the body’s impulse control center. An appropriately working cortex results in a “reining in” of hyperactivity, and/or angry outbursts, for example. In ADHD, the inhibitory mechanisms of the cortex do not work effectively, resulting in little or no impulse control in particular situations.
The limbic system is deep in the center, and at the base of the brain. It also acts as our “watchman,” informing us to alarming or harmful situations. If the limbic system is not functioning properly, then normal emotional changes and energy levels might be impacted, along with sleep patterns and stress management. Those with malfunctioning limbic systems may be subject to emotional outbursts, or be hypersensitive to their environments.
Located at the back of the head in the brain stem, the reticular activating system (RAS) is said to regulate waking and sleeping patterns, and plays a function in the capability to concentrate and focus attention. In the ADHD brain, elements of the RAS might not be operating normally. It might appear ironic that stimulants are recommended to deal with ADHD.
To observe the habits of somebody who has ADHD, you might think that they need something to sedate them. But, as noted above, slow-moving brain wave activity in these key areas seems to be connected to ADHD symptoms, so enhancing the brain’s activity via stimulants makes good sense.