Educators educating Educators

Sep 26

Neurotransmitters & AD/HD


Please read below before continuing this forum.

I remind all that a medical professional is the best place to seek help in reference to medical issues. A medical licensed doctor is the best source of information and nothing should be done without consulting your health care provider.

Always consult your doctor or a pharmacist before you randomly buy an over the counter supplement and start taking it! Something you think may contain active ingredients that interfere with whatever other medications you are on and may have major impact on your health, even put your life at risk!

This forum is for information purpose only and is based on my research. I am not a medical doctor nor portray myself as a medical doctor.

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People with AD/HD have trouble inhibiting outgoing stimuli-hence they are impulsive and restless or hyperactive

Stimulant medication helps them curtail these activities by stimulating their braking system, their inhibitory neurons. They improve mental focus and bolster executive functions (e.g., planning, prioritizing, and organizing), and sharpen mental focus the same way eyeglasses sharpen vision

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A stimulate stimulates the “brakes” in the brain

Stimulants stimulates the brain’s inhibitory circuits

People with AD/HD have trouble inhibiting incoming stimuli-hence they are distractible. They also have trouble inhibiting outgoing stimuli-hence they are impulsive and restless or hyperactive. Stimulant medication helps them curtail these activities by stimulating their braking system, their inhibitory neurons

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They work similarly like brakes on a car.

Stimulant medication allows the brain to slow down enough to gain control. Stimulants improve mental focus and bolster executive functions (e.g., planning, prioritizing, and organizing). Stimulants sharpen mental focus the same way eyeglasses sharpen vision

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Neurotransmitters/Psycho stimulants like Ritalin increase brain activity by increasing the brain concentration of chemicals such as dopamine, which are involved in the transmission of impulses or by stimulating the receptors to which the chemicals bind

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For information to pass from one synapse to another requires the action of neurotransmitters-chemicals found in the space (cleft) between synapses.

A neurotransmitter is a chemical messenger that allows one neuron to communicate with another. When a neuron gets excited and wants to pass on information to another neuron, it releases the neurotransmitter into a closed connection between two neurons called the cleft.

The neurotransmitter then crosses the space to another neuron and binds to specific receptors that cause an effect inside the receiving neuron.

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One way to think about AD/HD is it is a problem of balance between the activities of norepinephrine and dopamine-two different neurotransmitters.

When you have too much norepinephrine working, you’re agitated, and you can pay attention only to things that may be threats or targets of opportunity (the “fight or flight” mechanism is very active).

When you have too much dopamine, you tend to get stuck on repetitive activities (i.e., playing video games), and you don’t get bored doing the same thing repeatedly.

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Dopamine is the learning, reward (satisfaction), attention, and movement neurotransmitter. Methylphenidate (Ritalin) eases AD/HD disorder by raising dopamine, thus calming the mind

Serotonin is often called the “policeman of the brain” because it helps keep brain activity under control. It influences mood, impulsivity, anger, and aggressiveness. Serotonin drugs fluoxetine (Prozac) help modify brain activity that can lead to depression, anxiety, and obsessive-compulsiveness

Norepinephrine often amplifies signals that influence attention, perception, motivation, and arousal. The first neurotransmitter scientists studied to understand mood

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For additional information about neurotransmitters, consult “Neurotransmitters” under the “Anatomy Overview” section of the site.

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Psycho stimulants stimulate areas of the brain responsible for inhibition

Acts like brakes on a car, stimulant medication allows the brain to slow down enough to gain control

A stimulate stimulates the brakes in the brain, it stimulates the inhibitory circuits

People with AD/HD have trouble inhibiting incoming stimuli-hence they are distractible

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News

Welcome back to another school year. I hope your summer was relaxing and invigorating and you are looking forward to the approaching school year and the opportunity to stimulate and challenge your students’ minds.

This summer I was able to study Sir Ken Robinson, a British author, speaker and international advisor on education to governments, non-profits, and education organizations

I, like many people, find his writings and Ted Talks not only witty and inspiring but also thought-provoking and challenging. Much of his work deals with the diversity of intelligence, the power of imagination and creativity, and the importance of commitment to our own capabilities. He posits that the noticeable lack of them in our schools negatively affect students’ learning and teachers’ productivity and the absence of them is triggered by the demands of standardized testing.

I hope you find Sir Ken Robinson’s words inspiriting and challenging as I do and be mindful of them as you plan for the new year. Here is to a great 2017-2018 school year!