ADHD diagnoses soaring, maybe to make kids manageable at school

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  • worf Mcallen, TX
    April 2, 2013 11:23 p.m.


    This is what happens when children have no freedom to play, explore, gain independence, or become creative. Mark Twain would have struggled with this.

    Modern American children have their whole waken day managed, and structured by a bunch of tests, and accountability to the state. Very much abused.

  • tigger AMERICAN FORK, UT
    April 2, 2013 6:45 p.m.

    There is another reason that high school age students are diagnosed with ADHD. Parents push for the diagnosis in hopes of getting accommodations such as extended time on the ACT test.

  • LVIS Salt Lake City, UT
    April 2, 2013 8:13 a.m.


    Really? "You folks"? Look--no one is saying that there are not legitimate cases of ADHD. The comments are directed more toward a society in which the 'easy fix' is to prescribe medication, when the fact of the matter is that in many cases parents and schools have lost sight of the reality that raising active children is a labor-intensive undertaking. For those that are truly in need, by all means, medicate away.

  • Kathy. Iowa, Iowa
    April 2, 2013 7:58 a.m.


    If you have not watched the PBS special " The Medicated Child" I highly recommend it. It is available online.

    In practice drugs are the first choice for many parents, teachers and psychologists.

    Our son at age 3 when he still had very little language and we had been full out working with him, they wanted to put him on Ritalin. Their reasoning was because he was not picking up language it was because he was too busy. They had absolutely no proof of their theory.

    I'm sorry but our son is not your drug experiment.

    When you watch the PBS special it will be an eye opening event.

  • techpubs Sioux City, IA
    April 2, 2013 7:07 a.m.

    Does ADHD exist? Yes. That has been proven and it is treatable. However, I suspect that many are labeled as ADHD that shouldn't be. When I was in grade school we had recesses where we played on swings, teeter-totters, and merry-go-rounds. We also played softball, dodgeball, and tag. So 3 times during the schoolday we were burning off excess energy. Today the young kids are not allowed to do most of those activities because they have been judged too dangerous to do on a school playground. For half of those diagnosed today, more activity at recess would most likely solve the problem.

  • Hamath Omaha, NE
    April 2, 2013 6:38 a.m.

    It's certainly a complex issue. Many of us who worry about medicated students, see children who act almost zombielike when they are put on the medicine. Their spark of life seems to change.

    I actually am diagnosed with ADHD. My parents once had a hard time finding my desk at school. Finally they found it literally touching the teachers desk off to the side. I was... a wild child. But, eventually with help from my parents and special education teachers and regular teachers, I started to through non-medicated means learned to control, learn, interact, and thrive on my own. By 6th grade I was doing good, by 8th I was excelling in a few areas and by 12th grade I took an AP class and got a 4 on the AP test. Now I'm married happily and have a Ph.D. and teach college classes. There are alternatives to medication for some if not all children with ADD and ADHD, they just take enormous amounts of time and patience.

  • Erin R. Salt Lake City, UT
    April 1, 2013 11:45 p.m.

    Sorry to use that word, I don't mean to say all ADD patients are idiots, but that is truly how I felt about myself my entire life before I knew what was wrong. Nobody ever caught on when I was growing up because I didn't have the hyperactivity aspect and that's what everyone thinks ADD is. I feel so much more at peace without that horrid, relentless insecurity hanging over me every waking minute, just knowing I'm forgetting SOMETHING and screwing something up for myself.

  • Erin R. Salt Lake City, UT
    April 1, 2013 11:43 p.m.

    I finally figured out what was wrong with me and got my ADD diagnosis at age 31. After starting a prescription and finally, for the first time in my life, being able to control my brain (instant forgetfulness is my worst thing) and function as a normal person, I would never recommend withholding medication from anyone who truly needs it. The difference I felt was absolutely remarkable. I'm on my second prescription now after the first one lost its effectiveness and there are definitely side effects (I feel like I'm having a mini anxiety attack every morning after I take my pill) but even so, I don't think I can ever go back to being the total idiot I was without treatment.

  • Lasvegaspam Henderson, NV
    April 1, 2013 10:42 p.m.

    I know a child for whom medication makes the difference between straight F's and straight A's!!! How can one even argue that we are proceeding in the wrong direction when results like this are out there? You folks remind me of those within the deaf community who think it's a BAD thing to rely on a cochlear implant to gain hearing -- that doing so diminishes the "deaf experience" and is an affront to those who cope with being deaf and don't have the implant.

    When a child's brain is unable to focus (as in true ADHD), why in the world would we not use that which benefits it?

  • Tyler D Meridian, ID
    April 1, 2013 10:00 p.m.

    50 years ago they were just boys... now they're disabled.

    I bet that if boys were taught in the proper environment (instead of classroom settings designed for well-behaved girls) or by teachers who knew how to handle them, most of these diagnoses would go away.

  • Kathy. Iowa, Iowa
    April 1, 2013 9:11 p.m.

    Would love to see them control for single parent homes.