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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Essay

1218 words - 5 pages

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a development disorder that is displayed by three clusters of symptoms: inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity (Barlow & Durand, 2012). ADHD leads to people having trouble concentrating, not being able to finish tasks and having poor academic performance (Barlow & Durand, 2012). The treatments available for ADHD are based on biological and psychosocial interventions or a combination of both. This writing will try to explain why psychosocial interventions combined with biological treatment are preferable and is a better form of treatment compared to biological treatments for people with ADHD or solely psychosocial interventions alone.
In this section, the different pharmaceutical treatments will be discussed. First and foremost, what is ADHD? In recent years, ADHD has emerged as one of the most common psychiatric disorders in the child-to-adolescent population (Ferrin et al., 2012). Drug treatment, a form of biological intervention, has proven effective for the management of ADHD; however it doesn’t cure but reduce the symptoms (Barlow & Durand, 2012). The most common type of medication used for treating ADHD is called a "stimulant” which comes in 3 forms: short acting (immediate-release), intermediate-acting, and long-acting forms (NIMH, n.d.). A study done by Fox, Tharp, & Fox, (2005) showed that “20% of childhood ADHD patients have no effect to stimulant medication” (Wegrzyn, Hearrington, Martin & Randolph, 2012) and have to search for substitute treatments. For many children, ADHD medications help to reduce the symptoms but a one-size-fits-all approach does not apply for all children (NIMH, n.d.). Any child taking medications must be monitored closely and carefully by caregivers and doctors.
The effects of ADHD can make learning more challenging for students (Samuels, 2005 as cited in ). As a result, approximately 66% of children diagnosed with ADHD take daily medication to treat the symptoms (CDC, 2010). These largely stimulant medications help in increasing the levels of neurotransmitters such as dopamine and norepinephrine, which are typically in short supply in students with ADHD (Wegrzyn et a., 2012) but once the medicine’s effect is depleted, the patient’s symptoms act out again. This therefore shows that without regular usage, the medication isn’t effective in controlling the impulsive behaviors or increase their attention span, which are the concerns pertaining to ADHD patients (Quinn, 2012).
The stimulants (methylphenidate and amphetamine) are the most commonly prescribed agents for ADHD (Barlow & Durand, 2012). Research done by Wilens (2003) found “untreated individuals with ADHD were at a two-fold risk for the development of nicotine and substance abuse (SA; including drug or alcohol abuse or dependence) through their life”. ADHD medication has also been known to cause side effects which are dangerous. “Studies show that children and teenagers who take atomoxetine (Strattera)...

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