ADHD, Medication, and Education Taj, Raj, Lama, and Amy
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) • One of the most common childhood behavior disorders. • Misdiagnoses of ADHD in children. • What are the medicines prescribed for children with ADHD, and their effect on the brain and behavior. • Positives and negatives of medication. • Strategies for teachers to decrease disruptive classroom behavior-Inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity.
What does an ADHD brain look like? • A developmental disorder affecting 3-5% of students globally. • Several brain regions and structures tend to be smaller than students without ADHD. Generally 5% smaller. • Lack of symmetry between right and left hemispheres. • Brain areas that control attention appear to be less active.
Medications • Stimulants • Methylphenidate (Ritalin, Metadate and Concerta) • Amphetamine (Adderall, Dexedrine and Dextrostate). • Non-stimulants • Strattera and Intuniv • Anti-depressant • Wellbutrin
Effects of Drugs on ADHD Brain • Neurotransmitters - chemical substances for operation, regulation, and communication of the brain (Dopamine and Norepinephrine) • ADHD drugs fall into a class of medications known as stimulants, non-stimulants and anti-depressants • These drugs affect the regulation of two neurotransmitters - dopamine and norepinephrine
Negative side effects of prescription medicine • Decreased appetite. Less appetite during the middle of the day, and more hungry in the evening when medicine has worn off. • Sleep problems. Doctor may prescribe lower dose of antidepressant. • Stomachaches and headaches. • Less common: repetitive movements (tics), personality change (lack of emotion). • Cancer causing agents. • Depression, suicidal. • Heart problems, sudden death in children with heart conditions. • Violent behavior. • Acting without thinking. • Panic attacks. • Abnormal excitement. • Potential stimulant abuse • Medications may interfere with normal brain development. • www.ritalindeath.com was created in memory of children who died by using the drug Ritalin
Positive effects of medication • Less distracted. • More efficient with time. • Lowers risk of substance abuse in males by 85%. • Increased listening skills, concentration and focus. • Reduce impulsive behavior. • Reduces hyperactivity.
Problems with diagnoses of ADHD • Many disorders have similar symptoms leading to a wrong diagnoses. • There are no specific lab tests for ADHD. • Child psychiatrists are limited. • Pediatricians who are unequipped are making diagnoses. • Doctors don’t research complete medical history of the family. • Misconstruing behaviors such defiance, and hyperactivity as causative explanations. • Prescribing unnecessary medications which exacerbates existing conditions or create new symptoms and behaviors. • Sometimes students who are less mature are often times misdiagnosed. • Girls are often under diagnosed.
References Bailey, E. (n.d.) Is ADHD Overdiagnosed? Health Central. Retrieved October 11, 2011 from http://www.healthcentral.com/adhd/just-diagnosed-263797-5_2.html • Bogart, Carol. ADHD Drugs: Yes or No? Hugpages.Retrieved October 13, 2011 from • http://carolbogart.hubpages.com/hub/ADHD_Drugs_-_Yes_or_No • Cohen, M. (2007, August 22). Misdiagnosing ADHD: Just because it's in vogue doesn't mean it's accurate. Discovery Magazine. Retrieved October 11, 2011, from http://discovermagazine.com/2007/sep/vital-signs-misdiagnosing-adhd Mota-Castillo, M. (2007, July 1). The crisis of overdiagnosed ADHD in children. Psychiatric Times, 24(6). Retreived October 11, 2011 from http://www.psychiatrictimes.com/adhd/content/article/10168/53786 Nazario, B. ( 2005, January 10). Is It ADHD or Bipolar Disorder? WebMD. Retrieved October 11, 2011, from http://www.medicinenet.com/script/main/art.asp?articlekey=50453 • Robinson, Lawrence., Smith, Melinda., Segal, Jeanne. (October 2011). Are ADHD drugs right for your child? Helpguide.Org. Retrieved October 13, 2011 from http://helpguide.org/mental/adhd_medications.htm