Are "Stimulant Drugs" Such As Ritalin Effective In Treating People Suffering With Ad/Hd?

1851 words - 7 pages

This essay will discuss the effectiveness of Ritalin and other "stimulants" in treating AD/HD. Effective is defined in the Macquarie dictionary as: producing the intended resultAttention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or AD/HD is a neurological disease; it is characterized by three distinct sets of symptoms: inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity.Inattention. People who are inattentive find it hard time keeping their mind on any one thing and may get bored with a task after only a few minutes. They may give effortless, automatic attention to activities and things they enjoy. But focusing deliberate, conscious attention to organizing and completing a task or learning something new is difficult.Hyperactivity. People who are hyperactive always seem to be in motion. They can't sit still. Sitting still through a lesson can be an impossible task. Hyperactive children squirm in their seat or roam around the room. Or they might wiggle their feet, touch everything, or noisily tap their pencil. Hyperactive teens and adults may feel intensely restless. They may be fidgety.Impulsivity. People who are overly impulsive seem unable to curb their immediate reactions or think before they act. As a result, they may blurt out inappropriate comments. Their impulsivity may make it hard for them to wait for things they want or to take their turn in games. They may grab a toy from another child or hit when they're upset.Although these problems usually occur together, one may be present without the other. Inattention or attention deficit may not become apparent until a child enters the challenging environment of elementary school. Such children then have difficulty paying attention to details and are easily distracted by other events that are occurring at the same time; they find it difficult and unpleasant to finish their schoolwork; they put off anything that requires a sustained mental effort; they are prone to make careless mistakes, and are disorganized, losing their school books and assignments; they appear not to listen when spoken to and often fail to follow through on tasks.There are various ways for treating AD/HD the commonly used Ritalin, Concerta Dexedrine, Adderall and Cylert are often called "stimulants". When prescribed for people who have ADHD, they stimulate the frontal parts of the brain which are not filtering out distractions as well as they should. The medications work similarly to caffeine. They are not tranquilizers or sedatives. The children appear "calmer" because they are more focused, not because they are sedated. Many children require medication in order to give them the basic tools needed to work on behavioral modifications.In the past 10 years there has been a serious increase in people taking "stimulants", in Australia between 1991 and 1998, there was a 2400 percent increase in the prescription of Dexedrine and a 640 percent increase in the prescription of Ritalin.There are various positive and negative effects to using these...

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