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What happened to ‘naughty’ ?

Posted by Big John on October 27, 2008

I was interested to read recently that we are ‘pumping’ record levels of drugs into hyperactive kids who are said to be suffering from ADHD, and the latest figures show that doctors wrote more than 535,000 prescriptions for anti-hyperactivity drugs last year, that’s more than 10,000 a week.

When I was a kid there was no such thing as ‘Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder’ as we were all too ‘knackered’ from playing in the local parks or other open spaces to have any energy left to be disruptive; so I was not surprised to learn that researchers in the USA have discovered that time spent in a ‘green’ environment has as good a calming effect on hyperactive children as stuffing the poor little buggers full of bloody ‘Ritalin’.

Now I’m sure that there are a few unfortunate children who need medication to help control their behavioural problems, but I cannot believe that so many need what has been described as a ‘chemical cosh’.

Looking back I think that … 

…   a ‘clip round the ear’ was far kinder.


5 Responses to “What happened to ‘naughty’ ?”

  1. SilverTiger said

    We have a lot of things these days not available to us in the Good Old days, such as Legionnaires’ Disease, ME and SAD, to name but three. Are these new diseases; old diseases not previously recognized; or the result of over-active imagination?

    I learnt recently that there were outbreaks of a disease called “sweating fever” in Tudor times which killed hundreds or perhaps thousands of people. It is a mysterious disease that seems no longer to exist although it was very real and a real killer at the time.

    So some of these modern afflictions might possibly be novel illnesses that didn’t exist “when I were a lad” and might possibly disappear again like the sweating fever.

    When you and I were at school, some people used to get punished for failing to learn to write and spell correctly. Many of those would today be diagnosed as dyslexic and if that condition had been known then, quite a few would have been spared unnecessary grief.

    The danger, I think, is that there are fashions in medicine as in everything else and that this sometimes leads practitioners up a blind alley. Quite often these fashions turn out to be quite profitable for certain practitioners and drugs companies. Funny that.

  2. Ginnie said

    I can’t believe that you read that recommendation from someone in the United States…since it seems that we have the highest rate of FAT, non-active kids in the world. Just plain goood old common sense would tell you that a romp outdoors is what’s needed.
    (To be fair I do know one mother who has a child that was helped tremendously with Ridalin…her child was actually dangerous without it.)

  3. Chris said

    I’m certainly not going to make any excuses for young people’s bad behaviour. However, among those ‘record levels of drugs’ that you mentioned, would you include such things as (alleged) cattle growth hormone residues in meat, and the cocktail of e-numbers that is in a lot of food these days? None of these drugs are prescribed by doctors; they’re foisted on us all by multinational companies who care only about the bottom line, not the side-effects. Worth a thought, isn’t it? After all, they do say ‘you are what you eat’.

  4. Darlene said

    ADHD is a brain disorder and some children do need medication for that. The problem is, too many hyperactive children are misdiagnosed for having this disease and are medicated when, as you pointed out, a good romp around the park would be better for them.

  5. Terri said

    Ah, another topic I’m passionate about. As Darlene and you mentioned, yes, sometimes the med is required and necessary. However, what really irks me is most of the time it’s prescribed based only a parent’s complaint that the kid won’t settle down, etc.
    We can also add anti-depressants to this, in my opinion. I once did a blog about this and got some very nasty emails from people who disagreed with me. Again, while some people truly do have a chemical imbalance creating the depression…..for the most part, sorry, it’s used as a crutch.

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