Finding solutions that offer hope and confidence
days everyone seems to be talking about Attention Deficit Disorder
(ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
If you haven’t
heard about it at school, from a family member or had personal experience,
you’ve probably read about it or seen it on TV.
this document you will find out what you can do about it. The therapy
offered at the Mozart Center, while not a cure, can go a long way to help
people with ADD or ADHD. All programs are individually tailored
to get the best possible results.
Trying to Unravel the Controversies about ADD and ADHD
A review of the scientific
literature shows that ADD is a hotly debated topic. Some experts go as far
as saying that the ADD syndrome lacks supportive evidence and should be
clinically discarded (G. Coles, L. Fleisher and P. Breggin). Others believe
that ADD is a neurological syndrome whose cause might be genetic (Hallowell
and Ratey). However, they admit "the exact mechanism underlying ADD
remains unknown. There is no single lesion of the brain, no single
neurotransmitter system, no single gene we have identified that triggers ADD."
As you see, even the experts do not agree.
We have no idea who is right. Our only concern is to help people with ADD
and ADHD overcome their problems. We do so "The Natural Way", without
medication. Over the years, we have been quite successful helping
people, by fine-tuning the way they listen. In the following paragraphs you
will see why this is important, and why it works.
The Tomatis Approach
The Tomatis Method can help people
with ADD and ADHD by
regulating the vestibular
desensitizing the bone
making you right ear dominant
In the paragraphs below we will discuss why this is helping people
with ADD and ADHD.
Regulating the Vestibular Function
According to one of the
leading pioneers of the concept of sensory integration, Dr. Jean Ayres, all
our senses have to work in concert. In other words, our senses of touch,
smell, taste, sight and sound, as well as our physical movement and body
awareness, they all have to work in harmony. The senses send the information
they gather to the brain, where it is interpreted and organized. That
process is called sensory integration. When one of our senses doesn't
function properly, our learning process and our quality of living are
For some children, sensory
integration develops effortlessly during the course of ordinary play and
childhood activities. For others, though, sensory integration develops in
a disordered manner, causing a number of problems in learning, development
Jean Ayres concludes that these problems arise when the
vestibule does not function well.
In her book, Sensory Integration and
the Child, Dr. Ayres writes: "Well-modulated vestibular activity
is very important for maintaining a calm, alert state. The vestibular
system also keeps the level of arousal of the nervous system balanced.
An under-active vestibular system contributes to hyperactivity
and distractibility because of the lack of its modulating influence."
There are several ways to
stimulate the vestibule. Hyperactive kids do it by moving around
continuously. Unfortunately, they do not get a lot of benefit from it, as
the vestibule is not able to translate it into a genuine stimulation of
the brain. Occupational therapists use a whole array of movement
techniques to stimulate the vestibule, often with good results. In the
Tomatis Method, we use the stimulation of the gated sounds, either alone
or in combination with the movement techniques, often with spectacular
the bone conduction
If you think about it, you’ll
know that we hear with more than just our ears. The bones of our body and
our skin tissue are also sensitive to sound. When we hear a gunshot, a
loud screech or a door slamming, our bodies shudder instinctively and can
even give us "Goosebumps". The sounds picked up by our bones are
transmitted directly to our inner-ear, without any filter to dampen their
intensity. They arrive in the brain without any warning signals. That's
why they produce a reflex reaction. On the other hand, sounds picked up by
our ears are dampened to a comfortable intensity. In addition, the
body picks up the sounds slightly before they reach our ears, and so our
ears are forewarned that sounds are coming.
People with some types of ADD or
ADHD hear too much through bone conduction. They
primarily listen with their body, instead of with their ears.
As a result, all sounds go directly into the inner ear, without any filter
to dampen the intensity and to filter out irrelevant sound input. That is one of the reasons
why they are so reactive.
They are at the mercy of what is going on in their environment
because they have somehow lost the ability to focus and tune out extraneous
If you can, try to imagine
what it would be like to not have the ability to tune out
the extraneous noise around you. Every noise would have the same amount of sound value.
You’d try to catch a word but then a noise from somewhere distracts you.
As a result, you missed the next part of the conversation or
instruction being given. People would begin to get mad at you because you
didn’t pay attention. You knew you meant to focus your attention but
these other noises kept intruding. Now imagine this happening over and
over and over in a day’s time, a week’s time, a month’s time or even
over a year’s time. You get the picture.
it were you, how would you feel?
You’d feel overwhelmed.
╗ You’d feel like it
was hard to learn due to the distractions.
╗ You might feel
ashamed that you couldn’t focus like other people.
╗ You’d always feel
like you’re trying to catch up.
╗ You’d probably feel
confused because of the constant sound overload.
╗ You could possibly
feel inferior because it’s so difficult to keep up due to the
So, what would you do
with this situation?
You could tune-out,
become lethargic and very quiet
You could react
to every bit of input you get, frantically jumping from one topic to
the next, never be able to stay with one topic, in short, suffer
At the Mozart Center, we'll train your ears to become the main entrance to sounds, and make your
bone conduction the secondary entrance. That way, the sounds can be
processed in the correct way. We'll
do it by having you listen to gated music through a special headphone that
is equipped with a vibrator. Through the vibrator you'll listen with your
body, at the same time as you listen with your ears. Over time, you will
adjust to listening primarily with your ears. Desensitizing
the bone conduction reduces the stress and gives you the
ability to pay attention and learn more effectively.
will also train you to correctly use the bone conduction. One of its functions is to forewarn the ear that sound is coming. This can be best
illustrated with an example. When you want someone to really pay
attention, you tap him or her on the shoulder and say: hey listen! The
function of the bone is exactly the same: it says to the ear: hey listen!
Ideally, the ear should obey to this command almost instantaneously. In
people with ADD and ADHD, however, it can take a relatively long time. So,
their ears are not ready to process the incoming sounds in time.
Fortunately, we can remedy this. When we start the training, will
send the sounds to the bone a long time before it is sent to the ear (up
to 250 milliseconds in case of severe Attention Deficit). Over time we
will gradually reduce the time lapse between sound sent to the bone and
the ear, getting
your brain adjusted to the proper use of your bone conduction.
you Right-Ear Dominant
To the surprise of many, we each have a
dominant ear. Some are
right-ear dominant. Others
are left-ear dominant. The
advantage in being right-ear dominant is that the right ear processes the
incoming auditory information faster than the left ear. Therefore, people who are right ear dominant are more
likely to pay better attention.
The right ear processes
information faster because it sends the information directly to the left
brain, which specializes in processing language. However, the left ear sends
the information to the right brain, which cannot process language. The
information has thus to be rerouted to the left brain via the Corpus
Because that’s a longer pathway, the information is delayed. Left-ear-dominant
people thus have to play catch-up all the time. Not only
is the information late, it is also incomplete. In the transfer from the
right brain to the left brain, some of the higher frequencies are lost. As
we have seen before, these are the frequencies that are key to distinguish
similar sounds (like a B and a P). Left-ear-dominant
people thus not only have to play catch-up, they also have to play with an
Listening Program helps people with ADD and ADHD achieve better right-ear
dominance. Towards the end of the program, we'll gradually shift the
sounds from the left ear to the right ear. You'll also do some reading
exercises through a microphone coupled with our electronic equipment.
We'll filter your voice and return it exclusively to your right ear. It
will teach you to listen to yourself and develop self-listening skills,
which people with ADHD and ADD often lack. Over
time, you'll become right ear dominant, making
it easier for you to pay attention.
clinical experience shows that, in most cases, your symptoms of
ADD and ADHD will gradually decrease, just by tuning-up your ears.
like to read some
true accounts from children
and adults with ADD and ADHD?
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