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Family Mindfulness as an Alternative Treatment for Childhood ADHD


Clnical trial finds that both mindfulness and medication are helpful for children with ADHD

Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a common challenge for many children, and while medication is often the go-to treatment, it's not always the perfect solution due to potential side effects and long-term effectiveness. Researchers have been investigating alternative approaches, such as mindfulness, to see if they offer viable options. A clinical trial comparing mindfulness with medication for children with ADHD sheds light on these potential avenues for managing the condition.

Clinical Trial

This trial set out to compare two methods of addressing ADHD: medication and a mindfulness-based intervention called "MYmind." The MYmind program consisted of weekly mindfulness sessions for children and concurrent sessions for their parents over two months, followed by a single follow-up session two months later. On the other hand, the medication approach involved four months of taking a drug called methylphenidate.

Key Findings

Initially, the medication appeared to be more effective than mindfulness in reducing ADHD symptoms, as reported by parents, teachers, and neutral observers at the two and four-month marks. However, over time, the differences between the two treatments became less pronounced, with both groups showing similar results by the ten-month follow-up.

Long-Term Implications

An intriguing aspect of the trial was the observation that some children who initially participated in the mindfulness program eventually began taking medication, while some who were initially on medication stopped taking it. This complicates the interpretation of the long-term effects and suggests that mindfulness may have a role to play either as an alternative or complementary treatment to medication.


Another noteworthy finding was that more children discontinued their medication during the trial period compared to those who stopped participating in the mindfulness program. This suggests that mindfulness may be more easily accepted and adhered to by children and families, potentially leading to better engagement and continuity of treatment.


While medication remains the primary treatment for ADHD, this trial highlights the potential of mindfulness-based interventions as promising alternatives or supplements. While mindfulness alone may not be sufficient for all cases, it can be a valuable addition to the treatment arsenal, offering a holistic approach that addresses both the child's symptoms and the family dynamics surrounding ADHD.

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The findings of this trial underscore the importance of exploring diverse treatment options for ADHD and tailoring interventions to individual needs and preferences. Family-based mindfulness programs offer a comprehensive approach to managing ADHD symptoms and supporting the well-being of both children and their parents. Further research is needed to fully understand the role of mindfulness in the treatment landscape for childhood ADHD.


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This content is for informational and educational purposes only. It is not intended to provide medical advice or to take the place of such advice or treatment from a personal physician. All readers/viewers of this content are advised to consult their doctors or qualified health professionals regarding specific health questions. CenTrial Data Ltd. does not take responsibility for possible health consequences of any person or persons reading or following the information in this educational content. Treatments and clinical trials mentioned may not be appropriate or available for all trial participants. Outcomes from treatments and clinical trials may vary from person to person. Consult with your doctor as to whether a clinical trial is a suitable option for your condition. Assistance from generative AI tools may have been used in writing this article.