There are a good number of people who choose to use natural remedies rather than medications, not only for their ADHD, but for other things as well.
I like having the choice of either/or, and usually opt for the natural cure if it works for me.
I have studied the medicinal use of herbs – just for my own interests – and I’ve tried quite a few. I haven’t tried all of the ones mentioned here, but I will share my own experiences with the ones I am familiar with.
Valerian root is a powerful herb – and powerfully stinky as well. 🙁 It is excellent for use in calming, relieving anxiety, or aiding in sleep. If you decide to try it, do so when you will be at home and can see how it affects you. For some people, it puts them right to sleep. You don’t want to be driving a car when that happens!
I have used Valerian root for sleep and anxiety as has my daughter. Everyone I know who has tried it continues to use it.
Gingko Biloba is used to boost brain function and cognitive ability. It does so by increasing blood flow to the brain. Gingko Biloba has only recently been used for ADHD, but has shown great promise in slowing down Alzheimer’s Disease.
Gingko Biloba has also shown to be effective in reducing irritability and frustration, and oddly enough, has also worked for bedwetting and auditory processing problems. Definitely an herb to think about.
Ginseng works to balance out your energy level, increase brain function, and even help you sleep better. It seems to work by affecting the dopamine levels in your brain. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that affects the brain’s reward and pleasure centers. Dopamine not only allows you to see goals, but to take action towards them. It can also improve attention, impulsive behavior, and help you focus.
Taken with Gingko Biloba, ginseng can sharpen your memory and improve concentration.
Kava Kava is another herb used for calming. In fact, you may find it preferable over Valerian root because it is more gentle and does not smell bad. It is also good for anxiety.
Gotu Kola is useful for memory and brain function and helps in retaining information. It is also effective for treating anxiety and depression, which often come along with ADHD.
Although you can find herbal supplements everywhere these days, it’s important to know that the better quality herbs will have better effects. Choose a health food store or even a supplement store over the corner drug store. There are also some good online sources. Mountain Rose Herbs is one I have used for years.
Finally, don’t forget that herbs are drugs, just like the stuff you get in the prescription bottles. Don’t misuse them and be sure to check with your doctor or pharmacist about interactions with any drugs you may be taking.