Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Ritalin Use-a Scandal

There are currrently no medical tests for ADHD, and children are diagnosed based on their behaviour - including displays of inattention, fidgeting and restlessness, which are all perfectly normal behaviour in children.

Sami Timimi, a consultant child expert and adolescent psychiatrist based in Lincolnshire, described the soaring use of Ritalin as "a scandal" and insisted that the drug should be used only as a last resort.
"It is ludicrous that the normal spectrum of behaviour that all kids will demonstrate at some time in their childhood is now interpreted as a disorder which requires medication,"

"Various methods of behaviour management therapy and a change in diet are often all a child needs but adults are increasingly turning over the role of parenting to professionals who feel more "doctory" if they can make a diagnosis and prescribe medication."

Prof Peter Hill, an ADHD specialist and honorary consultant in child psychiatry at the Great Ormond Street Hospital in London, believes that the concept of ADHD has become popular, "partly because it offers an alternative explanation for antisocial behaviour, other than bad parenting".

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