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June 24, 2014

What is Attention Deficit Disorder?

Use of Ritalin in ADD People
The industrial change in the mid of the eighteenth century introduced gradual changes in the mode of life of the people thinking and attitudes. It was not a change for good. The era of material progress brought prosperity for many but it fell with a heavy hand on spiritual values in which all the noble emotions and values of humanity are enshrined. This material progress had brought in many incurable evils; drug addiction is also one of them. 
What is Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD)?
Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are the terms used for the children having difficulties. At present adults are also facing the same problems and now they too have suffered from ADD or ADHD.
According to Dr. Michael Hurd, a psychologist of Maryland who works for ADD-labeled children,
Mental health clinicians such as myself continually hear parents of kids diagnosed with ADD point out that their kids can concentrate when and if they choose to do so. The operative word here is 'choose.' Proponents of ADD seem to be suggesting that kids do not make choices, that if Johnny does not concentrate on his homework or pay attention in class it must be due to a 'disorder' rather than a simple choice not to focus his attention.
How do you explain the fact that some kids who display ADD in the classroom show no evidence of such a syndrome when playing a video game, talking to friends on the telephone, or engaging in other intellectually undemanding activities? If ADD kids have a biological inability to focus, then how can they easily concentrate on so many activities? “ (Hurd).
            It has been noticed that many adults are also facing difficulties of ADD. Dr. Peter Jesca wrote about it,  “There are many positive qualities associated with ADD, such as high energy, creativity and daring. After a lifetime of struggles, frustration, failures and loss of self-esteem, many individuals with ADD need to recognize, appreciate and use such potential strengths to benefit themselves” (Levine).
Dr. Kathleen Nadeau also emphasized on the positive points. She wrote,
 “A study of successful business entrepreneurs today will show a great over-representation of individuals with ADD. People in sales, inventors, politicians, comedians, pilots, entertainers and all manner of other high profile people have strong ADD characteristics” (Levine).
            So why does ADD always portrays as some thing negative. According to Dr. Nadeau,
“So why do some in the business community hold a largely negative view of people with ADD? Because of that 'disability frame' which has been placed around them. Because so many work environments today-with windowless cubicles in noisy workspaces-are so intolerable to those who are more distractible or who are more sensitive to environmental stressors. Because we live more inactive, stressed, time-pressured lives these days. Because many managers don't know how to recognize the strengths of these often highly intelligent and creative employees, who may also have difficulty with time management or mundane, detailed paperwork (Levine).
Causes of ADD:
ADD is actually a personality disorder whose roots can be found in the early childhood of a person as according to Erikson, the first five stages of growth and development belong to children, from their infancy to teen ages, which play a major role in the personality development of a person. These five stages are:
·         First Stage: This is the stage from infancy to almost two years of age. In this stage, according to Erikson’s theory, child learns to trust the people (Erikson's Development Stages, 1990). If the parents give the child proper care and attention, he or she will start feeling that the world is full of good people and a safer place to live. On the other hand if the parents have not given the proper attention to the child, he or she will develop mistrust and suspicion about the people of the world. If the balance of attention is right in this stage then it will help the child to develop hope in his or her personality.
·         Second Stage: This is the stage from almost two years of age to three to four years of age. If the parents allow their toddler to explore the environment, he or she will grow with feeling of independence and autonomy. This is an important stage as a proper balance is required from the parents and other caretakers, because the proper balance gives the child a sense of self-control with all the independence. If the parents discourage the child in exploring the environment at this stage, the child will grow with the sense of shame and doubt. If the proper balance is given to the child at this stage, the child will grow with the quality of strong willpower or determination.
·         Third Stage: This stage comprises of the age group from three years to six years of age. In this stage children learn how to prepare for the challenges of life. In other words, children learn to take initiatives in this stage. If the parents encourage the child in taking initiative he or she will grow with the clear vision and habit of taking initiatives. On the other hand, if the child is not encouraged to take initiative he or she will grow with the sense of guilt in his or her personality. If the proper balance is maintained at this stage, the child have the virtue of courage in his or her personality, otherwise he or she will become ruthless and do not care about other persons while taking initiatives.
·         Fourth Stage: This is the stage of six to twelve years, which is the school-going age of the children. In this stage children learn how to plan and the feeling of success. Plays are very important at this stage of development, as it teaches the children how to abide by the laws and rules. If the parents, teachers, other caretakers or the peers do not encourage the child at this stage he may grow with an inferiority complex.
·         Fifth Stage: This is the adolescence stage, which started at twelve years and lasts till nineteen or twenty years of age. In this stage, adolescent learns about their ego-identity. It means the boy or girl learns that who he really is and how he or she fits in the society (Davis and Clifton, 1995). At this stage of life peers, groups or role model play much important role than parents. If they encourage the adolescent then he or she will grow with a sense of loyalty with the society otherwise he or she, most probably, grow with fanaticism in his or her personality.
Children who grow up in a violent family not only witness aggression; they often bear the burnt of it. Tragically, child abuse is not a rare occurrence. It is estimated that each year in the United States over a million children are physically abused (Gelles and Cornell, 1990).
Children are abused by strangers as well as by family members, but severe abuse, particularly of young children, is more inflicted by parents and caretakers. Boys suffer more physical abuse than do girls and mothers are more likely than fathers do physically abuse their children (Straus et al., 1980).
Child abuse is multiply determined (Belsky, 1993). Among the factors associated with increased child abuse are personal characteristics of the abusing parents (such as personality and substance abuse) and of the child (younger children are more often abused by family members); the family’s socioeconomic status; stressful experiences; social isolation; marital conflict; and the abusing parent’s having been abused as a child.
Myths about use of Ritalin:
The chemical name for Ritalin is Methylphenidate hydrochloride, which is an antidepressant stimulant usually used by the patients of ADD. Ritalin is the best medicine for Attention deficit disorder for children and adults both. Following are some of the myths about Ritalin:
·         Ritalin is a new medicine for ADD patients: this is absolutely false, as Ritalin has been used for ADD patients for more than 45 years. Before Ritalin, Dexedrine was used for this purpose but Ritalin has succeeded it because it has much lower potential for addiction or abuse
·          Some people argued that schools are making money by having children diagnosed for ADD or ADHD: this is not true, although figures may vary but schools get $450 to $600 per patient of ADD, which is far less amount used to compensate for the expenses of special need children
·         Ritalin makes the people addicted for other drugs also: this is not true for patients of ADD or ADHD. Different studies depicted that ADD patients who are taking Ritalin as medicine are less likely to have any problem of substance abuse. On the other hand, people who do not suffer with ADD may have some problems due to the use of Ritalin
·         Ritalin creates holes in brain: this is not true. There are actually no holes in the brain. Areas with less blood flow in brain are termed as holes
·         Ritalin is like Cocaine: although cocaine and Ritalin both are stimulants but they both have different effects. Ritalin when used in ADD as a prescribed medicine not at all behave like cocaine in the body. Sometimes people who are not affected by ADD used it as a drug to get “cocaine effect”, but as a prescribed medicine of ADD it is quite harmless
·         The use of Ritalin is against the law and lawsuits have been passed against its use: the fact is, only five lawsuits were passed against the use of Ritalin out of which four were dismissed by the judges after hearing the facts.
After all the above-mentioned discussion, it can easily be concluded that ADD can be caused at any age and most of the times it was caused due to the negligence and child abuse.
As far as the use of Ritalin in ADD is concerned, it is highly recommended. The discussion has shown that there is nothing bad or negative to use Ritalin in ADD, on the Contrary, Ritalin is best antidepressant stimulant used as a medicine in ADD. It is actually Ritalin, which converts the negative effects of ADD into positive ones.  
Dr. Kathleen Nadeau, in one of her books, said, “One minute you're bouncing off the walls and driving your coworkers nuts. A short time later you're reading a complex report and writing an assessment for your boss. The difference is Ritalin” (Levine).       


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