A case study published on June 20, 2012 in the Journal of Upper Cervical Chiropractic Research documented chiropractic helping a boy diagnosed with ADHD and bi-polar disorder. According to the study authors, ADHD affects between 3% to 7% of school age children. They report that there are three main symptoms associated with ADHD that include impulsiveness, inattention, and hyperactivity. Additionally, the authors note that Bipolar Disorder is a psychiatric disorder with symptoms of recurrent mood episodes and has a high rate of suicide.
In this study a 16 year old boy was brought to the chiropractor by his mother. The boy had been previously diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. He had been suffering with these problems since he was six months old. The boys mother reported that some of his actions included, "temper tantrums where he would scream and cry for no reason until he was so exhausted he could no longer cry."
In an effort to control his behavior, the boy was placed on a variety of medications with mixed results. Some of the medications seemed to control his behavior but made the boy, "non-functional" according to his mother. Other medication seemed to have the exact opposite effect exacerbating the boys uncontrollability.
A chiropractic examination was performed that included thermal scans, spinal palpation and spinal x-rays of the upper neck area. It was determined that the young boy had a subluxation of the top bone in his spine, the "atlas". After approval from his parents, a specific course of chiropractic care aimed at correction of the atlas subluxation was initiated.
During the course of the child's care, his mother kept a log of her son's symptoms to chart his progress. Initially the boy's changes were erratic with the boy experiencing anxiety attacks and fluctuating symptoms. As care continued, the boy was able to sleep better and his symptoms were showing consistent improvement.
The study notes that after 15 weeks of care, the boy and his mother reported resolution in the boy's anxiety attacks, anger outbursts, irrational social interactions, and general musculoskeletal pains. In reporting on the boy's overall improvement, the study authors state, "The patient stated that his sleep continued to improve and that his thoughts were clear, allowing him to do better in school. The patient reported the ability to cope better and that he was no longer nervous and was able to sit still."