Monday, April 25, 2005

Kids and Drugs

Why is this happening? Well, this for starters. We have a serious drug problem in this country, and I don’t mean illegal drugs (though they, too, are certainly a problem). While George Will complains about a society addicted to therapy, I fear that therapy is being approached in the wrong way: people who are perfectly capable of dealing with and controlling their emotions are being told to “let it out” while people who have difficulty controlling their emotions and impulses are drugged into submission rather than taught how to deal with them. How can we teach kids not to do drugs when we’re shoving them down their throats? And how are people to suppose to learn how to behave if discipline (which takes time and patience) is replaced by pills?

I recognize that there are people out there who seriously need medication. But it seems to me, medication should be a last resort, particularly for children who are still developing both physically and mentally. Adults need to keep in mind that prescription drugs can have some serious side effects. When did we as a society become so attached to medication? Are prescription drugs covered by enough medical plans now that people don’t think twice about taking them? Or are we just collectively becoming more mentally ill? There’s a comforting thought. Personally, if I want to take a mind-altering drug, I’ll stick to caffeine.


Blogger Tony Brooks said...

Bravo..Although, I feel that there are situations that may actually necissitate medication. ADHD, and Hyperactive behavior do in some cases substanciate the need for medication.

But WE as parents MUST regulate, and STOP the school, or medical facilites from drugging our Youth.

The Youth of Today are already growing up with Snoop Dogg, and Major sports athletes saying "YES" to weed.

Steriods, weed, and booze are all part of the counter-culture in America.

Parents step up, get off your Prozac, Paxil and Wellbutrin and WAKE UP. Our kids need role-models that are doped into submission.

KIDS....Help yourselves. Make the choice to stay away from drugs, prescription or otherwise.


4/25/2005 8:21 PM  
Blogger SpakKadi said...

As I said, there are people who need medication. But I think there are many cases where kids are being medicated when all they really need is more discipline or possibly a little behavioural modification. I compensated for my borderline ADD by becoming slightly OCD. They counteract eachother. It makes me a little weird, but life would be boring if we weren't weird in our own ways. I think mild cases of ADHD should be able to learn to deal with it without drugs, but it would take time and patience - something people don't seem to have a lot of these days.

As for schools encouraging parents to medicate their children: not that I agree with it, but in some ways, it may be an act of desperation. Schools cannot discipline children for fear of retribution from parents (up to and including lawsuits), so medicating the trouble students is just easier. But schools I have a whole load of issues with that I haven't gotten into yet. Because if I ever start in on the education system, I may spend two weeks straight writing with no sleep. I have enough trouble sleeping as is.

4/25/2005 8:41 PM  
Blogger Jody said...

My trite and marginally relevant aphorism for the day:

"When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail..."

4/25/2005 11:35 PM  
Blogger SpakKadi said...

The article on finding the right drugs for the right kids refers to a survey where many parents say that the medication their children are on is either unhelpful or extremely unhelpful. One of the doctors they talked to saw this as a sign that these children are on the wrong medicine. It didn't seem to occur to him that maybe the children shouldn't even be on medication at all.

4/26/2005 8:17 AM  
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10/19/2005 8:56 PM  
Anonymous youth with adhd said...

Hi SpakKadi,

Your opinion is worth noting, thank you.

11/11/2005 3:27 AM  
Anonymous child with adhd said...

Hi SpakKadi,

Thank you very much for Kids and Drugs, it was an informative post, very useful.

I'm currently researching information for kid adhd, would that be a topic that you are familiar with?

If you could help point me to the right direction it would be much appreciated.

Thank you for your time and effort.

Warmest regards,
Hoe Bing

11/18/2005 8:12 AM  
Anonymous youth with adhd said...

Hi SpakKadi,

Your opinion is worth noting, thank you.

11/20/2005 6:23 PM  
Anonymous youth with adhd said...

Hello SpakKadi,

Hi, my name is hoe bing and I am on a search for the latest information on ADHD.

Initially I was surfing websites to find information on kid with adhd but I found a whole heap of pure commercial content that led me nowhere.

It was such a relief to come by your blog and find some useful information. Thank you!

Personally I am working on a holistic approach to adhd and would value your input greatly.

I have a blog and also a subscriber following who would definitely benefit from your insights on adhd.

If you could take a moment to visit adhdpodcaster and make a comment, it would be very much appreciated.

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11/22/2005 2:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Have you seen articles that espouse to standards like the one below? If so, please direct me to the appropriate website. Thanks

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Children with ADHD

There is a perplexing state of affairs in today's society, there lies a strong correlation between the affluence of a society and the amount of disease that is present. There is also another correlation that troubles many a people and that is with affluence comes disease at an Earlier age.

Working with children and the parents of these children I often get asked the question, 'Why are Children with ADHD on the increase?'

The answer as you shall find is one that is both interesting and challenging.

Children of today are really no more different from the children of yesterday in terms of genetic makeup. However, if you examine the issue more closely you will tend to find that many children today have been given labels. For example, 'Oh, those are children with ADHD' or 'Those are the children who can't sit still.' Or 'That is the kid that always gets into trouble.'

These labels are not only destructive but also become a self fulfilling prophecy as it is repeated adnauseum.

So as a 21st century parent or a parent with a child with ADHD or a parent with children with ADHD, what knowledge framework do you need to equip yourself with to ensure your children live out their true potential?

Here is a quick reference list for thinking about ADHD
� ADHD is a source of great frustration because it is misunderstood
� ADHD medications are a great short term time buying device and should be avoided long term
� The above point goes for any sort of drug consumption. Think about it for a minute. Unless you have a biochemical deficiency in your body like Type 1 diabetes where your body fails to produce enough insulin or any at all, why would you take an external drug? A body that is in balance is totally healthy. It is only when the body is out of balance that dis-ease symptoms start to creep up.
� ADHD is a biochemical imbalance of the mind and body.
� The Head of Psychiatry in Harvard states that drugs for ADHD simply mask the effects of ADHD. It does not cure ADHD. This is an important point because a cure implies never to have to take the medication. This means that once you start on medication you will have to be on it for the rest of your life i.e. you have medically acquired a dependency for a biochemical imbalance. That is like stuffing all your rubbish (problematic behaviors) into a closet (medication) where no one can see it. But if you continue to stuff more rubbish into that closet, one day you will not have enough space and need to do one of two things. You either empty the rubbish (the natural conclusion) or you get a bigger closet (i.e. change to stronger medication to control the symptoms). The choice is obvious but sometimes when you don't have the necessary tools to deal with ADHD you tend to think the bigger closet is the only option.
� ADHD children are super sensitive to the emotions around them. Often they pick up emotional cues from their parents without realizing. Many parents come home frustrated or annoyed from work, the child with ADHD picks this up and starts to 'cause trouble' by becoming restless. Parents frustration increase because they just want some peace and quiet. They get angry which in turn is picked up by the child who then intensifies their activity. Things get way out of hand and some sort of punishment is handed down to the child who has no idea what just happened. The cycle repeats itself every so often.
� Our brains are wired emotionally. Positive praise is interpreted as an analytical/thinking exercise. Negative criticism including scolding, name calling, physical punishment all go directly to the emotional brain of children with ADHD. This means in order to ensure you get your message across in the most optimal way, you need to learn how to communicate with your ADHD children the way they like to be communicated with.
� Every negative comment requires 16 positive comments to neutralize the emotion. Save yourself the frustration and agitation by practicing positive communication.

The list is by no means complete. In dealing with children with ADHD there are a certain set of behavioural principles to follow. I will detail these steps in the coming weeks. I'll also build on the list as you continue to learn about what appears to be a mystical disorder known as 'Children with ADHD'

3/02/2006 4:34 AM  
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