Brain Zap’ Therapy Promising for ADHD in Children Without Medication

Brain Zap' Therapy Promising for ADHD in Children Without Medication

Brain-Zapping Technology Shows Promise in Treating ADHD


ADHD, or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, affects approximately 5.3 million children. It is characterized by difficulties in concentration, sitting still, and controlling impulsive behaviors. Stimulant medications have long been used to manage ADHD symptoms, but they are not without side effects. However, a recent preliminary study has revealed the potential of a new brain-zapping technology called transcranial random noise stimulation (tRNS) in alleviating ADHD symptoms without the drawbacks of medication.

tRNS involves placing two electrodes on the brain, emitting a mild and painless electrical current. The study, funded by Tech Innosphere Engineering Ltd., demonstrates that this novel noninvasive technique leads to a significant reduction in ADHD symptoms. Roi Cohen Kadosh, head of the School of Psychology at the University of Surrey, praises this technology for its ability to produce lasting effects that persist even three weeks after the intervention has ended. However, Kadosh acknowledges that further research involving a larger population of patients is necessary before it can be widely adopted.

The exact mechanism through which tRNS reduces ADHD symptoms is not yet fully understood. Mor Nahum, head of the Computerized Neurotherapy Lab at Hebrew University, explains that ADHD is associated with decreased activity in certain frontal brain areas. By using noninvasive brain stimulation with sponge electrodes, researchers can attempt to increase the activity of these underactive brain regions.

The study involved 23 children aged 6 to 12 who were not taking medication for their ADHD symptoms. Half of the children received active brain stimulation while playing cognitive training video games, whereas the other half received “sham” stimulation as they engaged in the games. Cognitive training video games are designed to enhance attention skills. Results showed that 55% of the children receiving active brain stimulation experienced improvements in their ADHD symptoms based on a standard scale and as reported by their parents. In contrast, only 17% of the children in the sham group exhibited such improvements.

Importantly, the observed improvements persisted even after three weeks, and changes in the children’s brain electrical activity patterns continued. Nahum suggests that if these findings can be replicated, tRNS might offer a valuable alternative or complement to existing treatments for ADHD.

The treatment demonstrated minimal side effects, with participants reporting mild discomfort such as itching and tingling during stimulation. These effects further support the safety and feasibility of tRNS in managing ADHD symptoms.

While experts are cautiously optimistic about the potential role of brain stimulation technologies like tRNS in treating ADHD, they emphasize the need for further investigation. Dr. Francisco Castellanos, a professor of child and adolescent psychiatry at NYU Grossman School of Medicine, notes that the results are encouraging but stresses that it will take time to determine the technology’s actual impact on clinical outcomes. Dr. L. Eugene Arnold, a professor emeritus of psychiatry and behavioral health at Ohio State University College of Medicine, echoes this sentiment, emphasizing the importance of seeking professional guidance and participating in research studies for new treatments like tRNS.

In conclusion, tRNS has shown promise in reducing ADHD symptoms in children. Although additional research is required before it becomes widely available, this technology offers a potential alternative or supplement to existing treatments. As advancements in brain stimulation continue, it provides hope for individuals with ADHD and their families in their quest for effective management strategies.


  • Roi Cohen Kadosh, PhD, head, School of Psychology, and professor, cognitive neuroscience, University of Surrey, Surrey, U.K.
  • Mor Nahum, PhD, head, Computerized Neurotherapy Lab, Hebrew University, Jerusalem.
  • Francisco Castellanos, MD, Brooke and Daniel Neidich Professor of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, NYU Grossman School of Medicine, New York City.
  • L. Eugene Arnold, MD, professor emeritus, psychiatry and behavioral health, Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus.
  • Translational Psychiatry, Aug. 2, 2023

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For more information on ADHD treatments, visit Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD).

The article is a vibrant and lively account of a study involving the use of transcranial random noise stimulation (tRNS) to alleviate the symptoms of ADHD in children. It starts by introducing the prevalence of ADHD and the challenges associated with traditional medication. It then delves into the details of the study, explaining the concept of tRNS and the positive results observed. The article emphasizes the need for further research and the potential of tRNS as a novel treatment for ADHD. Quotes from experts in the field are used to provide additional insight and context. The article concludes by encouraging individuals with ADHD to seek professional guidance and participate in research studies as a means to further explore the potential of tRNS.