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Psychiatric labels

MagazineAugust 2005 (Vol. 16 Issue 5)Psychiatric labels

Although mental disorders are overdiagnosed in children, the reality is that there is indeed an increased incidence of behavioural problems among children today

Although mental disorders are overdiagnosed in children, the reality is that there is indeed an increased incidence of behavioural problems among children today. So what is causing our children to 'act up' more than their counterparts of yesteryear?

* Adulterated food. Food additives or food sensitivities are well-documented causes of behavioural problems. The artificial colours and preservatives in processed foods gain easy access to the bloodstream and find their way into the brain, where they alter brain function and behaviour.

* Too many carbohydrates. Consuming huge quantities of refined carbohydrates is thought to cause 'brain fog' in some people. Dairy and wheat, if broken down incorrectly in the gut, can produce opioid compounds that trigger, or exacerbate, symptoms of autism (Expert Opin Ther Targets, 2002; 6: 175-83).

* A distressed or emotional environment. As an educational psychologist for the local education authority in East Sussex, Paul Myszor has found that a child's environment can trigger any underlying tendencies for behavioural or emotional problems. Exposure to domestic violence, for instance, has a major effect on children. If they've seen violence in the family, their emotional responses . . . can sometimes lead to behavioural problems, he says. While some children are born more emotionally volatile than others, says Myszor, a quiet, placid family can mitigate this genetically 'fiery' temperament. If they are born into a highly emotional family, then the child is dealt a 'double whammy' and the tendencies [for psychological problems] are exacerbated."

* Attachment problems. The level of attachment between a child and its primary caregiver can also affect the child's emotional development. In his seminal book Magical Child, Joseph Chilton Pearce stated that, for a child to develop into a successful, intelligent and healthy individual, a key factor is his initial experience of being unconditionally wanted, accepted and loved by at least one person so that he feels safe and secure. Other socioeconomic factors such as standard of living and level of education do not matter.
behavioural disorders, problem children, processed foods, toxic chemicals, brain fog, carbohydrates, opioids, distressed environment, attachment, love, security, autism, J.C, Pearce


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