Stop taking behavioral problems as a starting
point, but reason from the child's brain. Does the brain of these children have
enough energy to process the increased environmental stimuli of today's world?
This says professor and psychiatrist Hilgo Bruining of the Emma Children's

As a brand new Professor of Neurobiological Developmental Disorders, Bruining advocates that psychiatry should look at the energy needs of the brain. What if the environmental factors in the modern world simply cost the child brain too much energy? With these glasses on, many problems in the consulting room take on a different form: then we see the tired child brain. A brain that does not have enough energy to process all the information and stimuli and therefore becomes sleepy, anxious, irritable or absent-minded.

This view is supported by the fact that half of the increase in the number of children with autism and ADHD is unexplained. The answer will have to be somewhere in the changed environment. Bruining thinks of phenomena such as screen time, gaming, social media, unhealthy diet and performance pressure.

Hilgo Bruining wants to exchange the current simple labels - such as autism and ADHD - and pills for something else. "Using computer models, look at the interaction between the outside world, development and stimulus processing in the brain. And develop treatments from there. The use of the drug bumetanide is a first treatment that can support stimulus processing in children with more severe forms of autism."

To encourage cross-fertilization between care and research, Bruining has established the 'N=You Knowledge Center for Developmental Disorders'. Here, a team of psychiatrists, doctors and researchers, among others, work with maximum dedication to tailor-made treatment for children who cannot cope well with the outside world due to developmental problems of the brain.