Therapy for ADHD: effects of running and sunlight are examined
More and more people in Germany are diagnosed with “ADHD”. The causes and backgrounds of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) have not yet been fully clarified. This often makes it difficult for experts to give clear treatment recommendations. A new research project will now investigate whether therapy with running and sunlight can improve the situation of those affected.
New form of therapy for ADHD
A study last year showed that more and more children in Germany are diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. However, adults also have ADHD. The exact causes of ADHD have not yet been fully clarified. Those affected are often advised to take therapeutic measures such as behavioral therapy. Treatment with medicines is only an option if non-drug measures are insufficient. Researchers now want to investigate a new form of therapy.
Reduce and prevent secondary diseases
As the University Clinic in Frankfurt reports, only the typical symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder can be improved with medication.
However, many sufferers suffer from complications of ADHD such as depression and obesity.
A new EU-wide study led by the University Hospital Frankfurt is now investigating whether exercise programs and light therapy in adolescents and young adults can reduce complications and, at best, prevent them.
Movement and light
According to the researchers, about five percent of children are affected by ADHD, and in many cases, they remain into adulthood.
The disease is often the start of a potentially avoidable overall negative development: Other mental disorders such as depression and obesity can follow and cause considerable suffering.
Depression research in adult patients, as the press release says, suggests that exercise programs and light therapy can reduce depression and obesity.
A study from Canada, for example, showed that light therapy helps with non-seasonal depression. And experts, such as those at the Hannover Medical School (MHH), have been relying on exercise programs and sports against depression for some time.
Together with colleagues from Spain, England and the Netherlands, the Frankfurt scientists now want to find out whether adolescents and young adults with ADHD can also benefit from such therapies. These treatments do not require any medication.
Novel program for at home
As the scientists report, a novel program is used for the study, with which the participants can carry out the measures independently at home.
The patients receive a smartphone for this and are supported with the ten-week therapies using a specially developed app
In addition, they carry a sensor that collects information about physical activity and the duration of exposure to light.
The researchers hope that the study will provide answers to various questions: Can the young people and young adults be motivated in this way to carry out the therapies? And how well can depression and overweight be reduced or at best even prevented?
Subjects are still being sought for the study: ADHD sufferers as well as healthy people between the ages of 14 and 30. (ad)