Download This Paper Open PDF in Browser

Music and the Prevention and Amelioration of ADHD: A Theoretical Perspective

24 Pages Posted: 22 Dec 2009 Last revised: 24 Dec 2009

William L. Benzon

Independent

Date Written: December 7, 2009

Abstract

Russell A. Barkley has argued that ADHD is fundamentally a disorientation in time. These notes explore the possibility that music, which requires and supports finely tuned temporal cognition, might play a role in ameliorating ADHD. The discussion ranges across cultural issues (grasshopper vs. ant, lower rate of diagnosis of ADHD among African-Americans), play, distribution of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain, neural development, and genes in culture (studies of the distribution of alleles for dopamine receptors). Unfortunately, the literature on ADHD does not allow us to draw strong conclusions. We do not understand what causes ADHD nor do we understand how best to treat the condition. However, in view of the fact that ADHD does involve problems with temporal cognition, and that music does train one’s sense of timing, the use of music therapy as a way of ameliorating ADHD should be investigated. I also advocate conducting epidemiological studies about the relationship between dancing and music in childhood, especially in early childhood, and the incidence of ADHD.

Keywords: ADHD, ADD, music therapy, music, time, play, culture, development, education, attention, self-control

Suggested Citation

Benzon, William L., Music and the Prevention and Amelioration of ADHD: A Theoretical Perspective (December 7, 2009). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1527090 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.1527090

Paper statistics

Downloads
281
rank
94,203
Abstract Views
1,480
PlumX