And what happened when we were forced to live without it.
I don’t know why but this is one of the most depressing things I have read recently. It seems like, whatever the subject matter, we are caught in a web of ( fill in the blank- military, medical, financial, academic , etc) self serving deceit , government incompetence magnified by social media and ignored by our smug mass media. The story remains the same. COVID, addiction, schools, energy, markets you just need to fill in the names but the story is the same throughout. Common sense is considered misinformation and not permitted a forum. Villains are made heroes and heroes are considered crazy.
We are a nation of teenagers being governed by 10 year olds. Or we are a nation of sheep being governed by a cadre of vain, pompous bureaucrats. I can’t tell whether our elite is evil or stupid and I am not sure which is worse.
“Having too much of any controlled substance floating around makes the DEA nervous, so it caps production” of Adderall.
How nervous is the DEA about all the Chinese fentanyl coming across our border, and why doesn’t the DEA pressure Joe Biden or Border Czar Kamala Harris to cap that activity?
Pharmaceutical amphetamines are at the root of school shootings. Add in "medical marijuana" which is a mystery synthetic drug sometimes causing psychosis. Plus testosterone now. The exposure numbers track with the shooting incidences, and unfortunately are likely to continue with the amount of poly-pharmacy. I routinely see boys under 10 yo on amphetamines.
Boy a lot of this sounds like addicted people being really, really articulate about their need for a fix. And I absolutely think ADHD is real. And I also think it’s very, very easy to get diagnosed with ADHD.
It's no surprise that so many people like amphetamines when they are living in a society that asks them to pay attention to boring office work for hours a day without any exercise, with the spare time spent scrolling a phone. Give most people a little Adderall and they'll get more productive, feel like they have "better executive function", maybe with a bump in mood, etc. We need to be honest about whether psychiatrists are treating illnesses or doing something more like "cosmetic psychiatry" focused on enhancement. Maybe giving tons of people Adderall isn't so bad, or maybe it is, but we should at least be clear about what we're doing and stop calling everything ADHD.
I remember being in grad school in the early 90s when the anti-depressants craze started. I was having trouble adjusting to a new environment, and didn't particularly enjoy my part-time editing job, so I called a hotline about depression and was offered a prescription for anti-depressants. I turned it down.
Meanwhile, just about everyone in the program was on anti-depressants, walking around with fake smiles on their faces. No wonder I experienced difficulty connecting to these people. Now those are the Progressives who buy the transgender, race, and other bullshits on the market. The sheep my mother warned me not to become, hence my saying NO to anti-depressants.
For a time in New York, I had a GP who was a trans man. I was uncomfortable around this person, but would remind myself of my open mindedness (to a fault, actually), but this person creeped me out. Once I went in for extreme fatigue, and the transman doctor told me I needed to be on anti-depressants. I said, "I'm tired, not depressed. These aren't the same thing." The transman doctor fought with me about it. I didn't know what I was talking about, the transman said. My tiredness was caused by depression. This transman shoved the prescription at me.
I never filled it. And never went back to the transman doctor. A few weeks later, another doctor diagnosed me with severe anemia and gave me a prescription for iron pills.
As a culture, we've got to grow a pair and face up to the fact that life is hard, and we don't get stronger by hiding behind prescriptions. Every minor discomfort has been turned into something you take your kid to the doctor for. Then the doctor says your kid is trans...
JUST SAY NO.
“There’s more to the story than the criticism that ADHD pathologizes normal childhood behavior.”
There certainly is, but that criticism is a large part of the story. I taught high school for five years. My wife is entering her 13th. There are kids that most certainly have ADHD - but they are few, far between, and generally easily recognizable. Or at least they were when I was teaching. I quit seven years ago, just before the social media kids got to high school. Snapchat was still in its infancy, and tik tok wasn’t a thing.
That said, I generally observed that a lot of hyperactive kids either needed more challenge or less challenge in school. I think a lot of the rise since then is because their parents don’t pay enough attention to them. I’m guilty of looking at my phone at home too, and my young kids will try to do things to get my attention when it happens.
All of which is to say that it’s a multi-faceted problem, but over-diagnosis is definitely one of the facets.
“ It turns out people with ADHD have low levels of dopamine...”How exactly did they measures dopamine levels? This chemical imbalance theory is questionable at best for all psychiatric labels.
Sadly, I connect our 31 year old son’s addiction to meth and other party drugs to his taking increasing doses of Adderall at 13. We were getting our 13 year old high legally. I caution parents from putting their children on this medication.
Society is doing so much better since it turned away from God and the church, and people found their true meaning from all these pharmaceuticals that enhance their lives. 🤔
Corrupt big pharma & a captured industrial medical complex continues to be an existential threat to our nation. That is all.
These drugs should all be the last resort. In some cases they can be beneficial, but dangerous in many others. And this is true not just of drugs such as Adderall but of all prescription drugs. Truly, our medical industry has become entirely too reliant on chemicals. Aided and abetted by an indolent and impatient populace that demands instant gratification and won't take any measures for self improvement. Note the recent craze for diabetes drugs by people unwilling to undertake the harder steps of diet and exercise. Moreover, please don't get me started on the insanity of allowing pharmaceutical advertising.......
That is a depressing article. I had to take 3 Prozacs and a couple shots of tequila just to pull me out of a severe funk.
A bazillion word essay on the fact people REALLY like and get addicted to speed?!
This is the hard, nuanced truth: The pharmaceutical industry does great things; the pharmaceutical industry does terrible things. They are full of people who want to do good; they are full of people who want to make huge profits without regard to societal costs.
We were all sold a story (or many stories):
"Your depression is caused by a chemical imbalance. Take this pill"
"Your kid can't sit still because of a brain chemistry issue. Give him this pill"
"Your poor eating habits can be cured by these injections you take for the rest of your life"
"Your reflux can be cured by taking these little pills for the rest of your life. Just small side-effects (like permanent kidney and liver damage)"
and never forget:
"Just take this injection and you'll never have to worry about contracting or spreading COVID-19"
When my youngest son, now 17, was in kindergarten at our Catholic grammar school (which has served us well in the long-run, this is just an incident), his teachers asked us to make an appointment with our pediatrician because "something is wrong with him, he can't sit still and his behavior is inappropriate". He was a 5 year old boy, pro-social, very verbal, and liked to be up and about. Our pediatrician said "I've seen ADHD and your son does NOT have it, I don't know what they are talking about, he's 5". The teachers and principal still insisted we get a psycho-educational evaluation, just to be sure, which of course was not covered by insurance and because it was not a public school, not paid for by the Dept. of Ed. We went ahead with it anyway, mainly to prove them wrong and because, well, you can never know too much about your kid. The doctor was amazing. He did a whole battery of tests, including Stanford-Binet, EQ, IQ, executive function, etc. The evaluation came back in a lovely, 20 page binder. Off the charts for verbal and memory, pro-social, NO ADHD. He just needs to not have to sit still like a little girl for 8 hours a day and be told to sit out at recess for acting restless when recess is EXACTLY what he needed. So lo and behold, we present this to the school and they say, well, good, we'll keep this file confidential and if any further problems arise we'll reevaluate. Never mentioned again. His first grade teacher loved him, was young and had little brothers, totally "got" boys. But there were several other kids in each grade who were advised to put their kids on meds. The office of the doctor who evaluated our son had a waiting room full of little boys in the school uniform of our school. So, a matriarchy of early childhood teachers who don't want kids who can't sit still, leads to an over-diagnosis of a "problem" when what it is in many instances is just "5 year old boy syndrome" that they outgrow. I'm just glad we were able to prove them wrong.
On another note, this same son was a counselor at his camp last summer, and there was a kid there who was on Ritalin during the day, and then had to take melatonin to help him sleep. 10 years old and in the pharmaceutical loop already. Very sad. You wonder, is it parents who just can't be bothered figuring out how to keep their kids on track, so just drug them to make life easier, or is there really a higher incidence of ADHD?