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Drugs for ADHD – Side Effects and Repercussions
ADD/ADHD is North America’s leading childhood psychiatric disorder. When the following behaviour is pervasive and continues for at least 6 months, children are usually diagnosed with ADD/ADHD:
- Fidgets and squirms
- Lack of attention to detail
- Failure to follow through on instructions and failure to complete homework
- Interrupts or intrudes on others
- Blurts out answers
- Loses or forgets important things
- Talks excessively
- Doesn’t seem to listen when spoken to directly
You will notice that many of these behaviours are commonly found in children as well as adults! Unfortunately, 90% of children diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD/ADHD) are prescribed Ritalin or similar drugs. Ritalin is actually a class 2 controlled narcotic, in the same category as cocaine, and is highly susceptible to abuse and dependence. The two most common side effects of Ritalin are insomnia and lack of appetite – lack of sleep and lack of nutrients, pretty major side effects. And most of the children that are prescribed Ritalin, end up becoming a shell of their former selves because a type of numbness sets in. Other side effects of Ritalin include:
- Stunting of growth
- Tourette’s syndrome
- Heart problems
- Violent behaviour
In the fall of 2012, The Toronto Star ran a series of articles on the dangers of ADD/ADHD drugs, stating that Health Canada had kept over 600 serious adverse reactions a secret. Here are some of the statistics they shared with readers;
- Four deaths occurred, one girl dying from a cerebral hemorrhage in 2011
- 20 children were diagnosed with psychotic disorders
- More than 40 kids suffered depression
- 24 had convulsions
- 48 had hallucinations
- 20 overdoses, eight of them intentional – one of the boys was only 10
- 3 strokes
- 28 cases of heart problems – an 8 year old suffered a heart attack
- 23 cases involving damaged livers – a 12 year old died in 2007 after developing a liver tumour
Other side effects experienced by 7 year olds included sleep terrors, emotional disorders, weight loss, chest pain, muscle twisting, intentional self-injury, staring and fecal incontinence.
There are a number of ways in which nutritionists treat ADD/ADHD naturally, through dietary and supplementary changes. The number one culprit for ADD/ADHD is the chemicals in our food. Sugar is another culprit. Other common allergens contribute as well. And fish oils or other essential fatty acids can make a huge difference to a child with ADD/ADHD. More boys than girls are diagnosed with ADD/ADHD and more boys than girls are deficient in Essential Fatty Acids. There is a lot to try naturally; I encourage parents to look into these options before resorting to drugs.
How about you? Has your family experienced a diagnosis of ADD/ADHD? Share your stories with me. I love receiving feedback. And feel free to leave a link back to your own blog too if you have one via the commentluv feature here on the site.
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