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Yissel Mendoza

English 1010-080
December 09, 2015
Jason Roberts
I have previously read an article that claimed that children diagnosed with ADHD
has recently increased dramatically. Over the recent years, children in the U.S. have
been prescribed medication for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, commonly known
as ADHD. Within this article, Are ADHD Medications Overprescribed? The Wall Street
Journal discusses about why the number of ADHD has increased. To give some
background knowledge on ADHD, ADHD is a disorder. It is common amongst children,
but can develop during adulthood. Children diagnosed with this disorder have difficulty
staying focused and paying attention, difficulty controlling behavior and some
incidences of hyperactivity. The cause for the disorder is unknown.
However, there is medication that is able to reduce these symptoms. Most
parents or caretakers choose this option. Medication is claimed to be most effective
treatment and has a positive effects on symptoms. I decided to do further research on
the medication being used. I came across this article that claims that the medication
does not change a childs personality, and if it dies then the dose is too high. The
medication is only effective for about 4 to 12 hours and then essentially washes out of
the childs system. The way medication works is that the pharmaceutical changes the
level of dopamine to help with attention and focus. The way this works is by blocking the
dopamine transporter, which removes the dopamine from the neural pathway. Some say

that these pharmaceuticals are able to cause addiction and the children become
dependent on these pills. However, according to science, the medication does not raise
the dopamine high enough to produce euphoria. Euphoria is a feeling of intense
excitement, which is what makes some drugs so addictive.
However, medication isnt the only way to control the symptoms of ADHD. There
are some alternative treatments. They say, many children who are taking medication for
ADHD could do as well or even better with alternative treatments. These alternatives
include dietary and behavioral therapies, and have fewer side effects. Working with
families on behavioral-management programs and optimizing the classroom
environment can lead to major improvements. Dieting can also play a big part. In a
published study, Lancet found that 64% of children with ADHD had substantial
improvement in their symptoms when certain foods were eliminated from their diets.
Omega 3 fatty-acids supplements and the elimination of iron and zinc deficiencies have
also been shown to significantly improve. Although, more of these interventions may be
as powerful as medication. But when carefully combined for each child, they are often
able to solve the issue. We would like to believe that medication is safe and effective but
there is no scientific studies that indicate that these pharmaceuticals are effective or
even safe. These powerful drugs long term effects are largely unknown.
In the U.S., studies estimates that this misdiagnosing could account for 20% of
the current ADHD diagnoses, which is approximately about 900,00 children. Some
people might think, ugh, okay statistics blah blah blah. No one cares, why should I
care? No, imagine: approximately 900,000 children are diagnosed under as ADHD and
they dont have the disorder to begin with. This is an actual real issue, and this is why

you should care: Some children receiving medication dont meet the diagnostic criteria
for ADHD. In order to get an accurate assessment there must be a thorough history and
examination. However, thats not whats being done here. Many children are diagnosed
after a 10 to 15 minute visit with a pediatrician or other professional. This exposes the
child to harmful or even potentially dangerous drugs. This means that the people
making the diagnoses arent distinguishing, in many cases, between normal
development immaturity and ADHD. There have been an epidemic of medicating
ordinary kids just because their parents and teachers are having trouble controlling
them, and that were exposing children to harmful or dangerous drugs. Another reason
why misdiagnosing is an actual issue is because doctors dont ask enough question.
The doctors dont take other problems into account; such as learning disabilities,
anxiety, sleep apnea, child abuse, or a child being gifted. All these symptoms listed can
be misdiagnosed as ADHD, if you are in a rush to diagnose.
Now imagine: Your child was falsely diagnosed under as ADHD. However, your
child doesnt really have this disorder. Instead youre simply just having difficulty
controlling them or disciplining them.What would you do? Well this wasnt an imaginary
scenario for Charlie and his parents Sarah and her husband, Rob. Charlies teacher
was worried about his behavior in class, and discussed it with his parents. The teacher
began saying that Charlie found it difficult staying on task, paying attention, and
following orders. The teacher suggested that Charlie might have ADHD. Now, obviously
the parents were concerned for their child. They began to do some research on the
subject and they began to notice that the symptoms were very similar to Charlies
actions. So, they consulted a specialist. They discussed the teachers concerns and

what happened at school. They admitted that Charlie did have trouble following orders
at home. It would take repeated warnings for him to follow order through. This
specialists began to observe the child in his natural school environment. He then began
to notice that Charlie did have difficulties in class but they werent anything to be too
concerned about.
The specialist took into account that Charlie was the youngest amongst his
peers, which explains the immaturity. It also explains why he hasn't followed direct
orders because he isn't quite as mature as the others. He then proceeded to conduct
more assessments on Charlie in his office on measures of intelligence and academic
achievement. Charlie was multiple age and grade levels ahead. He concluded that
Charlie experienced some control and an activity interested him; he was cooperative,
attentive, and content. The specialist concluded that Charlie did not warrant a mental
health diagnosis. What Charlie needed was appraisal and reward; which is very
common with kids his age. There have been many cases just like Charlies in the
previous past for ADHD.
This case shows that we must take the time to diagnose this conditions carefully,
rather than reaching reflexively for a prescription pad every time a child is diagnosed
with ADHD l. Implement safe and reasonable interventions whenever possible before
using such strong pharmaceuticals. Best practices are not always followed. To cut down
on mistakes, we need better training of the pediatricians who write most of the
prescription for ADHD. We need better monitoring to make sure the medication is
effective as kids grow and change. We need more cooperation among all those who can

offer insight into an individual child's behavior. What we don't need is hysteria that we
are handing out dangerous drugs to kids like candy.
What would've happened if Charlie wasn't so lucky and was diagnosed with
ADHD? Children that aren't as lucky as Charlie go through self-esteem issues. We don't
need more kids to have a low self-esteem if the media is already doing that. They begin
to develop poor social skills that can potentially affect then later in in adulthood. They
begin to seek for outlets which then leads to substance abuse which then leads to
criminal activity. It all had its own domino effect. What we need for our present and
future children is to be healthy and sting. These children are our future presidents, our
future doctors, our future governors. In conclusion these children are our future and we
have to protect them from these harmful and dangerous pharmaceuticals. I know that
ADHD is very informational, which may get boring from all the facts and statistics.
However, I believe that misdiagnosis of ADHD is very important, it's an issue that must
be discussed more often.

Yissel Mendoza
English 1010-080
Jason Roberts
Annotated Bibliography

I have always heard about ADHD and ive known in previous past, some of my
classmates relatives have been diagnosed with ADHD. Ive always heard the term but
never really knew what it was. That was until my english professor told us to pick a topic
that sparks our interest. I came upon a list to choose from and ADHD stood out to me. I
have an interest in health and psychology. I am curious about how our mind function
and how our mind functions and how our body functions. So when I came across ADHD
I knew that that was what I wanted to research. I came to the project not knowing
anything and I came out concerned about the children with ADHD. There are so many
people out there, clueless about the importance ot the subject. Thats the issue not a lot
of people know about the issue and it makes it even more terrible because this affects
the present children and even the future children diagnosed with ADHD.

Gnaulati, Enrico. Back To Normal. Boston: Beacon Press, 2013. Print.

Two very concerned parents are trying to figure out what is the issue with their 4
year old son. They begin to notice that at times he would be difficult to control. The
teacher has even had trouble trying to control the child. He doesnt stay in task or
follows orders that are given. So these concerned parents have gone to see a therapist.
The therapist observes the child to see if the child actually has ADHD. But he seems to
notice that the reason why he is being immature is because he is young. He acts the
way he does because of the difference age group. The child is younger than his
following peers. The child also has to be constantly praised for the orders that are given
rather than demanding the orders. Which then comes to the conclusion that when

diagnosing such disorder must take in part of careful examination and patience rather
than jumping to the quick fix.
This source provides an emotional connection to the readers rather than giving
boring old factual information. It provides an example visionary that helps the readers
further understand the concept of misdiagnosis.
This source will be very helpful because of the example that is given. Applying
the what if concept to real life gets readers attention and has a bigger impact on their
opinion. This will help me persuade and convince my readers the issue of misdiagnosis.
I really do agree with this source in many ways. I really do believe that many people
jump to conclusions for an easy fix and they dont realize the damage that they are
doing on their child enforcing such dangerous drugs.

Miller, Caroline. Will ADHD Medication Change My Childs Brain. Child Mind Institute.
09 Jun. 2015. web. 28 Sept. 2015.

Medication allows the children to control their actions. About 80 percent of

children have a positive effect on symptoms of the medication. However, medication is
not able to become addictive. Medication only raises dopamine to a regular dosage. In
order to become an addiction it needs to produce a high enough level of euphoria,
which the pills do not provide. The medication has no effect on the childs personality.
The pharmaceutical is only effective for 4 to 12 hours.
This article is good to provide great informational facts on how the medication
works and what it does to the child. It uses a lot of research studies which makes the
audience trust the writer. With the examples used it convinces the audience to believe

that ADHD pharmaceuticals are safe to use. They continue to point out the positive
within these drugs, by doing so it helps the viewer form an opinion. However, it lacks in
the dangerous side of using the drugs. Which brings into question of: Are these drugs
dangerous at all?
Like I said before, child mind institute offers information on medication in more
depth. This article is solely based on ADHD medication. Which is actually helpful to
provide some background information on the drugs. Which is able to get my point
farther across. It provides a base to build up my persuasion of the topic. Reading the
article, it does change my viewpoint on medication. It persuades me to trust medication,
and it makes me form the opinion that these drugs are capable to help children with

ProQuest.At Issue: ADHD. ProQuest LLC 2015.n.pag. SIRS Issues Researcher. web.
09 Sept. 2015.

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is most commonly known as ADHD. This

disorder is defined difficulty staying focused and paying attention, difficulty controlling
behavior and incidences of hyperactivity. The reasons why ADHD is unknown, but the
number of children being diagnosed has increased. Children are being overmedicated
for ADHD? Are medication stimulants necessary? Some say that we shouldnt be using
medication because it leads to dependence, addiction, and overdose. By medicating
children is not the way to teach them vital coping skills and to manage their behavior.
Instead we are teaching them to take a pill. While others argue that medication is
effective and non addictive.

The key points in this article is that the number of ADHD has dramatically
increased. It also reviews the viewpoints of the opposing and the proposing. Opposing
views are that medication shouldnt be taken because it leads to dependence of drugs.
the proposing say that medication is safe and effective. However, with only little
information being provided its difficult to form an opinion.
This source is generalized as basic factual information. It explains the disorder,
saying what it is, and what is the issue. The article gives another point of views to give
perspective on the subject. Although, referring back to the question: Are children being
misdiagnosed? This article only helps with giving the basis of ADHD. However, it does
not give me the answer that I am searching for.

The New York Times.Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. nytimes. 16 Nov. 2015.
web. 16 Nov. 2015.

ADHD is a neurobehavioral disorder characterized by inattention, distractibility,

impulsivity and hyperactivity. There are three subtypes of ADHD, which are
Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Type, Predominantly Inattentive Type, and
Combination Type. When a high demand is placed on a childs attention, his brain motor
activity intensifies. Children with ADHD are usually distracted by an overstimulating
environment. They cannot hold group sentences and images in their mind long enough
to extract organized thoughts. They have difficult time adapting to minor changes in their
daily routines.
This source is helpful on getting knowledge about ADHD. It discusses thoroughly
about some of the signs on the disorder. The article gives visionary example to show

and better understand the symptoms of ADHD. It also goes through the symptoms of
adult ADHD, but not much information on this topic because the issue is less likely than
children ADHD. The information given is pretty straight forward.
The New York Times article is a helpful source because of the amount of
information that it gives. It is more in depth than any of the other articles. The source is
also to be used as background knowledge to inform the reader about ADHD. It doesnt
quite answer my question. However, I do like how it used visionary examples to have
the reader continue reading furthermore on the subject.

The Wall Street Journal. Are ADHD Medications Overprescribed? The Wall Street
Journal. 14 Feb. 2015 web. 28 Sept. 2015.

The Wall Street Journal says that the explanation of risen percentage in
diagnoses of ADHD is because the children are being misdiagnosed. Some of the
children diagnosed with ADHD could have mistakenly diagnosed. Some of these
children can be simply immature and parent cant control their child so they go for the
easy fix. Those that are diagnosed correctly should seek alternative treatments. Such
as dieting, behavioral-management, and optimizing certain environments. The article
claims that we must take time in determining whether the child has ADHD or is just
simply too immature.
This article gives different viewpoints which allows us to gain a bigger
perspective on the whole topic. From these viewpoints it allows us to form our own
opinion, our own insight. The article refers back to the point of misdiagnosis on children.

It also provides many examples to prove the point that misdiagnose of a child is
This source is helpful to answering my question. Using the given facts it is able to
build up my paper. I have gained new knowledge that is useful to persuade my
audience. I have learned that misdiagnosis is a big issue because children are being
opened to possible dangerous medication. This source will be what my paper is being
based on because it answers my question directly.