May 20

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Organization & Transition


People with attention deficits (ADD) or hyperactivity (ADHD) are often thought to be willfully avoiding tasks or lazy. However, there are physical reasons for disorganization and poor follow-through. The area of the brain that initiates behavior, anticipates consequences, and controls short-term memory is underenergized, causing poor task completion. In some people, there is also decreased blood flow to the right hemisphere that handles spatial perception and decision making. This can add to problems of losing things or getting lost. Mark any of the following strategies that you think would help you or your loved one with organization, memory, and helpful habits.

ORGANIZATION

Overorganization is important!

Dopamine and norepinephrine, the body’s natural stimulants, are abundant in the prefrontal area of the brain. An underactive cortex may (a) be less able to use these chemical messengers, or (b) have fewer dopamine neurons that connect the lower brain to prefrontal cortex. It may be a lack of input from the brain stem that decreases energy in the frontal cortex. Therefore:

FORGETFULNESS

ESTABLISH ROUTINES

References

Beyond Retalin by Stephen Garber, Marianne D. Garber, and Robyn F. Spizman (Harper Perennial, 1994).
Driven to Distraction by Edward Hallowell and John Rately (Simon & Schuster, 1995).

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