Originally posted by AnDroidX107
If the drug is not understood
why do they want kids to take it
It's more a case that ADHD is not completely understood. The action of the likes of ritalin and amphetamines in the brain are fairly well understood,
that is, what neurotransmitters they act on etc. The long-term effects of treating kids isn't.
But ADHD is less well understood. I don't want to put across that researchers know nothing, that's totally not the case. For example, there appears
to be a genetic component to ADHD, and the genes that have been identified underpin dopamine functioning. So, the dopamine hypothesis of ADHD has good
support. But, again, it can't be linked to single gene abnormalities, which is the case for most mental disorders.
As the likes of ritalin affect dopamine functioning, there is good reasons to accept their validity as efficacious treatments. They do improve the
functioning of ADHD kids.
Whether anyone wants to medicate their kids for such disorders is up to the family. There are other therapeutic approaches, and I'm sure there will
be better non-stimulant psychopharmacological treatments in future. Indeed, Modafinil appears to be promising.
I have no doubt that ADHD is becoming overdiagnosed, and kids are being mistreated in the aim of a quick fix for behavioural issues. But that doesn't
negate the existence of the true disorder.
The reason why stimulants are the treatment of choice is because, firstly, they do work; secondly, it is cheap and easy. Proper behavioural therapy is
timely and costly. It's the same with most mental conditions - the likes of CBT is expensive, popping prozac is cheap.
I wouldn't want give my child stimulants. But I don't have a ADHD kid, so I can't really judge whether I would if I was in such a position. I'm
sure it's not an easy decision.
[edit on 28-9-2007 by melatonin]