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Allechia Jones




CDC 24/7: Covering the basics

Study of CDC article, "What is ADHD?" (2019) reveals how writers try to persuade

readers by using their credentials, emotional appeals, and logical approach to treatment. Easy

access to the Internet has granted an opportunity for those searching for information. Finding a

reliable online source can be a daunting task. Since its creation in 1946, the CDC, Centers for

Disease Control and Prevention has taken on the task of nurturing public health (Mission, 2019)

while conducting critical scientific testing, as well as providing health information that protects the

nation against expensive and dangerous health threats while responding when they arise. The

Federal Government, responsible for the CDC, financially supports an online database that

addresses and educates the general population about illnesses from A-Z. One such illness, ADHD,

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, is no exception to the rule. The CDC's dedicated web

page, "What is ADHD?" covers signs and symptoms as well as suggested interventions. CDC

web article, "What is ADHD?" successfully appeals to the American public through well-

established authority and credibility, compelling yet gentle tone, and supported science of


The CDC's purpose for supplying health information about ADHD is to close the gaps in

the misunderstanding of what causes the disorder and how to treat it. Heavily relying on their

long-term presence and status in the community, the CDC makes a notable attempt to relieve the

apprehensiveness of those suffering or their loved ones by presenting a simple to read the article.

The article uses elementary verbiage, which is crucial for those looking to the Internet for simple

answers and direction. It is necessary to supply education about ADHD on the web as patients

now have easier access to health information through the Internet. The expectation is to be more

engaged in health decision making, traditional models of the patient-provider relationship, and

communication strategies that require users to adapt to the ever-changing demographics (Tan &

Goonawardene, 2017). The CDC, relying on credibility, successfully presents the average reader

the ability to search for more information about ADHD on their own, contact a health care

professional, or the CDC for more information.

Researching symptoms and treatment of illnesses affecting one's family can be a difficult

challenge. Often there is a fear of comprehension or lack of easy to read information. The CDC,

aware of potential emotional distress, displays a lighthearted tone throughout the article, implying

there is an awareness that the general population is now turning to the Internet for health-related

questions. As online health information content can range from being peer-reviewed or

professionally reviewed to personal blogs, opinions, or anecdotes of other patients, information

quality can vary, and patients may not possess the necessary skills to evaluate medical information

and relate it to their health circumstances. Consequently, online information can lead to a patient's

misinformation, leading to distress, and increase the tendency toward self-diagnosis or self-

treatment. Internet-informed patients may have more questions and may request added

treatments or medications during consultations. Hence, online information can add a new

interpretive role to physicians' responsibilities during consultations (Tan & Goonawardene, 2017).

The CDC systematically lays out the narrative in a basic format, expressing to the reader how

common the illness is and the avenues the government has taken to inform and educate the

general population, thus establishing professional credibility.

Currently, no definitive answer exists as to how ADHD begins, what biological or

sociological factors contribute, or environmental exposure leads to the disorder. The CDC, aware

of the increasingly technical demands placed on people by the information revolution, tries to

make it all the more important that people understand basic logical principles of the illness. While

the article identifies multiple factors that may or may not contribute to the illness, the CDC relies

on the general public to be able to tell, at some intuitive level, the difference between a valid

argument and an invalid one (Te Meerman, Batstra, Grietens, & Frances, 2017). The article

logically presents simple yet valid arguments while suggesting to the concerned to seek help. In a

responsible and respectful forum, the CDC expects readers to spot logical fallacies. The logos of

the article is set up in a similar pattern as the ethos appeal: a systematic explanation of the

research process, creating a logical sequence for the reader to follow.

Web article, "What is ADHD?" meets the basic need of the CDC to educate the public

about illnesses that directly affect thousands daily. As of 2016, an estimated 6.1 million U.S.

children between the ages of 2-17 years received an ADHD diagnosis (Danielson et al., 2018).

The article offers multiple outlets for further independent research while supplying contact

information for the CDC as well. The article presents an enticing call to action, the ability to

share the article for social media integration, assurance of frequent updates. A colorful purple

palette creates a soft undertone as well as being the official color of ADHD awareness. The CDC

gently guides the public to a better understanding of what may be the potential cause of an illness,

proposed treatments, and support. Relying on their more than 70 years of care, the use of soft

undertones, and sound logic persuasively supports the need of the public for more information

about an illness affecting so many Americans.


Danielson, M. L., Bitsko, R. H., Ghandour, R. M., Holbrook, J. R., Kogan, M. D., & Blumberg,

S. J. (2018). Prevalence of Parent-Reported ADHD Diagnosis and Associated Treatment


Among U.S. Children and Adolescents, 2016. Journal of clinical child and adolescent

psychology: the official journal for the Society of Clinical Child and Adolescent

Psychology, American Psychological Association, Division 53, 47(2), 199–212.


Mission, Role, and Pledge. (2019, May 13). Retrieved from


Tan, S. S., & Goonawardene, N. (2017). Internet Health Information Seeking and the Patient-

Physician Relationship: A Systematic Review. Journal of medical Internet research, 19(1),

e9. DOI:10.2196/jmir.5729

Te Meerman, S., Batstra, L., Grietens, H., & Frances, A. (2017). ADHD: a critical update for

educational professionals. International journal of qualitative studies on health and well-

being, 12(sup1), 1298267. DOI:10.1080/17482631.2017.1298267

What is ADHD? (2019, August 26). Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/adhd/facts.html.