Helping Children With ADHD & Autism Using TCM
Children Internal Medicine

Helping Children With ADHD & Autism Using TCM

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common childhood neurodevelopmental disorders, affecting about 3 to 5% of children worldwide. Symptoms can make completing everyday activities such as studying and concentrating on tasks more challenging. Many a time, behavioural changes as a result of ADHD can also strain the relationship between parents and their children. 

Meanwhile, 1 in 150 children in Singapore has autism, although rising numbers can be attributed to increased diagnostic criteria clarity and more people being appropriately diagnosed. As autism is a spectrum, symptoms experienced by children who have been diagnosed with this lifelong neuro-developmental condition vary across individuals. 

Western approaches utilise treatments like behavioural therapy and medications to manage and improve symptoms for both conditions, but there is no one-size-fits-all solution since each individual is unique. 

Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) comes into play as a complementary treatment to Western medicine, helping both parents and children to better navigate the ups and downs of ADHD and autism. 

Keep reading to find out more. 

TCM’s Perspective on ADHD and Autism

TCM Perspective on ADHD and Autism-tcm singapore

According to TCM, ADHD is primarily caused by Yin and Yang imbalances of the Liver and Kidney, causing symptoms like poor memory, impatience, irritability and learning difficulties to appear. Thus, TCM therapies in Singapore aim to restore the Yin-Yang balance of the body to not just manage ADHD, but also for improved overall well-being. 

As for autism, aside from genetics, TCM also holds that deficiencies in organs like the Spleen, Heart and Kidney contribute to Phlegm, which is a common syndrome observed in autistic children. For instance, food digests poorly in children with Spleen Qi deficiency, leading to the development and accumulation of Phlegm, which hinders the treatment progress. 

Learn more: Strengthen Your Child’s Digestive System

How TCM Helps to Manage ADHD and Autism

TCM therapies focus on addressing imbalances for internal harmony so that Qi flows naturally. A combination of treatments may be recommended too, as TCM trusts that a holistic approach is key to achieving longer-lasting and optimum results. 

  • Paediatric massage

Paediatric massage-tcm singapore

Gentle paediatric massage targeting acupoints is not just for common ailments like flu and indigestion, but also has positive effects on ADHD and autism symptoms. When done regularly, paediatric massage can restore inner balance, calm nerves, and improve a child’s ability to focus.

  • Chinese herbal medicine

Chinese herbal medicine-traditional chinese medicine singapore

Chinese herbal medicine may also be prescribed to address deficiencies, strengthen organs, improve memory, and address attention deficits. 

  • Acupuncture

Acupuncture-tcm singapore

Another TCM therapy that is helpful in managing ADHD and autism is acupuncture which is used to address internal imbalances and optimise Qi flow. Scalp acupuncture, in particular, has shown positive effects on improving motor skills, memory and sensory sensations. 

Frequently Asked Questions About TCM Therapies for ADHD and Autism

Even though TCM is a recognised complement to Western medicine in Singapore, it is only natural for parents to still have questions about the therapies used to manage ADHD and autism. Here are some of the frequently asked questions answered by certified TCM physicians at Thomson Chinese Medicine: 

1. Can TCM help ADHD or autism?

Like Western medicine, there is no known cure for ADHD and autism from TCM’s perspective. However, TCM therapies can help to enhance the child’s social, cognitive and emotive states. As every child is unique, it is important to visit a registered TCM clinic and consult a certified physician, and avoid self-medication. 

2. At what age can I bring my child for paediatric massage? 

Paediatric massage is a safe and gentle TCM treatment, and is suitable for babies from as young as six months old up to children of 12 years of age. 

3. What are some side effects of acupuncture?

Common side effects of acupuncture include bruising and feeling exhausted after, but these should resolve on their own within a few hours or days. If discomfort persists, do not hesitate to reach out to your TCM physician for advice. 

4. Can TCM work in tandem with Western medicine and treatments?

Yes, TCM can complement Western medicine and treatments for ADHD and autism but take note to inform the physician of the medications you are taking to avoid any potential drug-herb interactions. 

5. What are some herbs that are generally effective in improving symptoms of autism or ADHD?

Ginseng, Gingko Biloba, Pine bark extracts and various herbal teas. However, it is important to consult a registered TCM physician to confirm the suitability of these herbs for the individual.

Visit a TCM Clinic in Singapore Today

Thomson Chinese Medicine has TCM physicians that are committed to helping patients with ADHD and autism lead a normal life as much as possible. 

We offer a wide range of therapies, including Chinese herbal medicine, acupuncture, paediatric massage and herbal packs.

Book an appointment today!

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