Posts Tagged ‘restless’

Fidgeting and Restlessness: Whole Classroom Solution. – Doc Meek

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I was asked this question somewhat in desperation by a teacher of junior high school age students. About 20 students had signed up for an after-school study skills course.

The teacher had thought that these teenagers would be attentive since they had voluntarily joined this group to improve their marks in school.

Not so!

The students chattered with each other, and wandered about the room, more intent on looking at their electronic devices than attending to what the teacher had to say.

The teacher had grown exceedingly weary of appealing to the group and encouraging individual students to “settle down.”

“Global” problem

I advised the teacher that, generally speaking, almost all students in Canada and the US are deficient in the essential calming mineral magnesium because our society (unknowingly it appears) has removed the three major sources of calming magnesium that were historically available to all:


When major municipal drinking water suppliers added fluoride for dental health purposes, apparently they were unaware that the additive binds up the naturally-occurring essential calming mineral magnesium so that it is no longer bio-available to those drinking that water.


When major milk suppliers fortified milk with Vitamin D for health purposes, apparently they were unaware that the additive binds up the naturally-occurring essential calming magnesium so that it is no longer bio-available to those who are drinking the milk.


When major corporate food suppliers produced food on a mass scale, apparently they were unaware that this practice depleted soils of many essential trace minerals, including the essential calming mineral magnesium.

“Global” Solution

Global efforts by scientists to remove unhealthy man-made fluoride (an industrial waste product) from municipal drinking water supplies are underway. See, for example, FAN (Fluoride Action Network):

However, in the meantime, this doesn’t help the teacher, so I suggested the teacher try a “global” solution within her own classroom:

Encourage (require?) all students to carry a water bottle with them, containing pure non-fluoridated water with naturally-occurring calming magnesium, and have them sip the good water all day long.

This gives the students a triple benefit:

(1) The students are getting (again) the essential calming mineral magnesium in the water they are now sipping all day long.

(2) The students are hydrating their brains, and this is big, because most students (owing to consumption of sugar-water drinks, soda pop, etc.) are dehydrated and brains need hydration to work properly.

(3) This helps all of the students, not just those who have been “officially” diagnosed with attention disorders such as ADD or ADHD. Thus there is no stigma for any one individual student, a great advantage in any problem-solution effort.

Students may need a calcium-magnesium dietary supplement 

There are many magnesium-rich foods and if these can be located and consumed (minus the usual pesticides and mineral soil-depletion), this can be very helpful in reducing general anxiety, restlessness and fidgeting among students and adults alike.

And finding good mineral-rich foods is the best route to take.

However, because of the general deficiency of magnesium in water, milk and food supplies in Canadian and US society, students may be well-advised to take a good pure calcium-magnesium dietary supplement from a quality supplier. For example, see:

Many doctors prescribe calcium for bone health (and other reasons) without being aware that calcium requires its companion magnesium to ensure proper bio-availability of both the calcium and the calming magnesium.

For a good article on why you should not take a calcium supplement alone, see:

The ideal combination of calcium and calming magnesium (whether taken together in the same supplement, or taken separately) is 2 to 1. For example, if you are taking about 1200 to 1600 milligrams of pure calcium daily, then for proper use and bio-availability you need about half that amount in magnesium, about 600 to 800 milligrams of pure calming magnesium.

If the amount of magnesium you take daily produces loose stools, either eat more insoluble fibre or reduce the amount of  magnesium a bit.

Pure water and essential magnesium hydrate and calm the brain and the body

The students were initially reluctant to undertake the pure water sipping routine in the classroom (no sugar drinks, soda pop or coffee allowed), but when the teacher gladly led by example and some of the students followed her example and found their brains worked much better, soon all of the students were sipping and studying easier and remembering longer.

Great “global” solution for a “global” deficiency of essential calming magnesium and pure water hydration of the brain!

Doc Meek, Sherwood Park, Alberta, CANADA, Thurs, Apr 3, 2014

P.S. Happy Sipping! (Pure water only!) 😮

30 Minute ADHD Consultations

Are drugs the only effective help for ADD/ADHD?

I know a highly qualified MD who works with children who have been labeled ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) and ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). He affirms in his writings, and in his private practice, that the only effective method for treating ADD and ADHD is the use of pharmaceuticals. Many school personnel agree with his opinion.

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Since pharmaceuticals are all that he uses, and about 65% of his patients receive almost immediate help in the form of better attention and focus in the classroom, short-term, he feels he is right. So do the school personnel.

Are drugs really the only answer?

Let’s take a second look.

The help that drugs can provide to children labeled ADD or ADHD can be a “quick start” for some children if that is what you are after.

Long-term, the effects are seriously problematic if steps are not taken to capitalize on the “quick start” by also empowering these drugged children with personal strategies that will help them know they can develop self-managing patterns of behavior and thinking, pill or no pill.

I have been working with children labeled ADD, ADHD, ODD (Oppositional Defiant Disorder) and other attentional and learning problems for over 30 years, and I have always had success with children and parents who follow a multi-factor approach, and whose ultimate goal is permanent self-management (pill or no pill):

(1) If the child has not yet been drugged, we show her or him that s/he has the power to beat the “squirmies” for example. Or whatever else the presenting problem is.

(2) We also look at numerous confounding factors, all the way from nutritional deficiencies/needs through to allergies and toxic exposures, many of which are disguised as ADD, ADHD, ODD, Autism, etc.

(3) We engage the child at the level of taking responsibility for self-management and self-improvement, one baby step at a time.

(4) Progress not perfection.

(5) We show parents innovative ways to work with their child to avoid the “never-ending battle of wills.”

(6) “A pill for every ill” is not necessarily the only answer.

(7) If the child is already drugged, we work with the child and the parents to develop personal self-management strategies such that dosages may be reduced or even eliminated.

(8) Learning problems that have been transformed by labeling into seemingly intractable diseases are not as easy to treat as learning problems that are maintained at the level of personal problems to which personal solutions can be discovered with imagination and good will.

(9) It’s a great day when a child learns and knows: “Hey, I can do it!”

To hope and work and self-determination, and more than one single answer,

Doc Meek, May 6, 2010

At Sherwood Park, Alberta, CANADA; not at South Jordan, Utah, USA

Son labeled ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder)

I mentioned to the Mom whose son had been labeled ADD (Attention Deficit Disorder) that I was not fond of labels. I said that while a “private label” may be necessary for funding, insurance, or medical purposes, I hoped that in everyday life, neither she nor her son would take the label too seriously in terms of finding solutions for school problems.

I have found that when working with a child who has been labeled ADD, say in grade 4, that I would generally ignore the label and inquire: “Harold, the teacher tells me that you have the ‘squirmies’ in her class, that you are a bit restless, that you don’t find it easy to stay at your desk. Is that right?”

I have found that it is much easier to help the child find ways to overcome the “squirmies” than it is to overcome a label, which is, in the final analysis, really a description of the child’s behavior, not an eternal pronouncement carved in stone.

No one really knows what’s going on inside the child’s head, exactly. I would much rather work with a friendly mystery, than a dismal certitude, wouldn’t you? Besides success is greatly enhanced when you work with concrete behavior, not deterministic labels.

The same problem occurs with adults. Let’s say somebody has been labeled “alcoholic.” It is a lot easier for them to change their behavior when I work with them in overcoming their “drinking problems,” which is a set of concrete behaviors, with which we can work, piece by piece, as opposed to trying to refute a label that some think is stamped in their psyche “forever.” – Doc Meek, South Jordan, Utah