Has American society gone too far when it comes to medicating our youth? In recent years millions of people in the US, mostly young children, have been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and/or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Yet what exactly is being prescribed? What are the short and long term effects of these prescriptions? Are these so-called miracle drugs being over- prescribed? Or is it all a big conspiracy brought forward by the American Psychiatric Association (APA),the big time pharmaceutical companies, and others to make money? Regardless, of why medication for attention disorders has become such a phenomenon, it has become a problem, and the following will hopefully shed some light on the topic.
First we must ask what qualifies as an attention disorder? This is not a question easily answered, however the APA has complied a diagnostic reference book call the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). Their "what to look for list" reads as follows:
Easily distracted by sights or sounds
Failing to pay attention to details and making careless mistakes
Rarely following instructions carefully or completely
Losing or forgetting things like toys, pencils, tools, and books
Thus far very few unwanted effects have been determined, both immediate and long term. Do parents even know what they are giving their children It seems that this could be giving many parents a fake illusion that their child's problems have nothing to do with their home environment or with their performance as parents. needed for a taskFeeling restless often figiting with hands and feet, or squirmingClimbing or leaving a seat in stiuations where sitting or quite behavior is expectedBlurting out anwsers before hearing the whole questionHaving difficultly waiting in line or for a turnAfter reviewing this list we must ask ourselves since when is it considered a mental disorder to be energetic, to fidget, to run around, talk a lot , or daydream Often it seems many children diagnosed with attention disorders do not have one. According to the University of Michigan's annual "Monitoring the Future" studies, from 1988-1999! the percentage of seniors who reported ritalin use rose from 0. Now if consuming large amounts of MDMA can cause the body to stop producing the correct amounts of serotonin then can consuming large amounts of stimulants cause the body to stop producing the right amounts of dopamine and nor epinephrine So who is advocating the mass production and distribution of these schedule II drugsOne of the industries main distributors is CibaNovartis Pharmaceuticals, the distributors of Ritalin. Novartis also states, "There is neither specific evidence which clearly establishes the mechanism whereby Ritalin produces it's mental and behavioral affects on children, nor conclusive evidence regarding how these effects relate to the condition of the CNS (central nervous system)". These numbers are astonishing, but not surprising ! I mean a peppermint - flavored Prozac pill has recently been put on the market, so where does this madness endThis academic is far from over and the pharmaceutical companies are hard working hard to keep the production of stimulant drugs going. "Diagnosis and Treatment of Attention-DeficitHyperactivity Disorder in Children and Adolescents. Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders: A Handbook for Diagnosis and Treatment.