Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder Does Not Exist

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ADHD does not exist

By Kyle Smith  | Nypost.com

Pop quiz: Is the proportion of American children suffering from the disease known as attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder . . .

a) Less than 5%, as we believed before the early 1990s?
b) More than 11%, and rising, as suggested by CDC statistics?
c) Zero?

The correct answer is (c), says neurologist Richard Saul in his forthcoming book, “ADHD Does Not Exist: The Truth About Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder” (HarperWave), which is sure to cause controversy when it comes out in February.

After a long career treating patients complaining of such problems as short attention spans and an inability to focus, Saul is convinced that ADHD is a collection of symptoms, not a disease, and shouldn’t be listed in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual.adhd

Treating ADHD as a disease is a huge mistake, according to Saul. Imagine walking into a doctor’s office with severe abdominal pains and simply being prescribed painkillers. Then you walk away, pain-free. Later you die of appendicitis.

Patients show up at the clinic with their own ADHD diagnoses these days, simply because ADHD is in the air all around us — and because they want to score some delightful drugs like Adderall or Ritalin, or because their parents want an easy way to get them to sit down and shut up.

Adderall and Ritalin are stimulants, though, and the more you take them the more you develop a tolerance for them, which can lead to a dangerous addiction spiral.

The term attention deficit disorder was made official in 1980, when it appeared in that year’s edition of the DSM (the label changed to ADHD seven years later). Subsequent editions have steadily loosened the definition, and diagnoses have skyrocketed accordingly — from 7.8% in 2003 to 9.5% in 2007 to 11% in 2011. That’s one in nine children, two-thirds of them boys, who are being slapped with the ADHD label. Two-thirds of these children have been prescribed a stimulant.

“ADHD makes a great excuse,” Saul notes. “The diagnosis can be an easy-to-reach-for crutch. Moreover, there’s an attractive element to an ADHD diagnosis, especially in adults — it can be exciting to think of oneself as involved in many things at once, rather than stuck in a boring rut.”

In private practice, Saul found himself wondering, what other problems do these patients have besides being easily distracted? One girl he treated, it turned out, was being disruptive in class because she couldn’t see the blackboard. Correct diagnois: myopia. She needed glasses, not drugs.

A 36-year-old man who complained about his addiction to online games and guessed he had ADHD, it turned out, was drinking too much coffee and sleeping only four to five hours a night. Correct diagnosis: sleep deprivation. He needed blackout shades, a white-noise machine and a program that shut all his devices off at midnight.

A young man who asked, “Can’t you just ask me a few questions and write me a prescription?” simply left the office when Saul started probing too deeply into whatever was ailing him.

One by one, nearly all of Saul’s patients turned out to have some disease other than ADHD, such as Tourette’s, OCD, fragile X syndrome (a genetic mutation linked to mental retardation), autism, fetal alcohol syndrome, learning disabilities or such familiar conditions as substance abuse, poor hearing or even giftedness. A boy who was disruptive and inattentive in math class (but no other) was, simply, bored by the material and needed to be advanced a grade to regain his concentration.

In a few cases, there was simply no diagnosis. One adult who thought she had ADHD and had been prescribed stimulants by another doctor got a different take from Saul. He advised her to instead return to her habit of exercising regularly and cut back on work hours.

“I now realize it wasn’t ADHD,” she told him later, pleased with the progress she made as a result. “It was just life.”

The explosion in ADHD diagnoses and related prescriptions of stimulants is not without substantial costs. Potentially addictive drugs are not to be given out like Skittles.

“I know of far too many colleagues,” Saul writes, “who are willing to write a prescription for a stimulant with only a cursory examination of the patient, such as the ‘two-minute checklist,’ for ADHD.”

Two minutes to jot down a prescription may lead to years of consequences: short-term side effects of stimulants include loss of sleep, increased anxiety, irritability and mood problems. Over the long term, use of these drugs can lead to unhealthy weight loss, poor concentration and memory, even reduced life expectancy or self-destructive behaviors not excluding suicide

16 Comments on “Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder Does Not Exist”

  1. Chris

    Yes this is so true. I was diagnosed with ADHD when I was 6 years old and had been taking a slew of medications for it. And I can tell you that the side effects are not pretty at all. First off the medications did nothing to help me they just madethings worse. As the years went by I turned 14 and I was taking this oe medication that caused depression. I almost committed suicide several times, but thanks to the grace of God I’m Still here. The only way I stopped taking the Medications was to go against y mothers wishes and tell her that I wasn’t going to take them anymore. I stopped taking the meds at the age of 15. I’m now 20 years old and have long term effects from these drugs such as trouble remembering things and some emotional and mood problems. Whatever you do, please do not let the doctors give your children these horrible medications.

  2. Stan Rogers

    I never believed it was real. Like I always say, anytime money is involved you have consider the motive. Medicine is one of the most lucrative businesses there is. It’s not hard to discern.

  3. sandy Bartlett

    If not a disease than what is it? These symptoms are not made up and my child had the struggle so many other kids have faced,to the point of having a different 1 on 1 type school enviorment to succeed and get his diploma

  4. HB

    I mostly see affluent kids on this medicine because their parents are convinced that it helps them get good grades but what I also wouldn’t doubt is two things, 1. these kids are possibly sharing this stuff with their friends. 2. the weight loss factor, especially with the adults because they are too lazy to clean up their diet, get a personal trainer and live in fitness/wellness! The laziness of the world!

  5. Andrea

    This article is staggering. I had my daughter thoroughly tested at age 8 and age 10. The tests took the entire day, and there was no push to throw drugs at the problem. She has ADHD. To presume that her issues are merely symptoms of something else is complete ignorance. I am not fond of the inappropriate push to diagnose ADHD as a one size fits all approach, but I assure you ADHD is not a mere fancy of the imagination. Incidentally, her father also has it. Caution, not everything you read is accurate. Check the facts!

    1. Annalee

      Andrea, have you read some of the articles published by Dr’s at MD Anderson? There was a huge one published a few years ago showing how some supplements help with symptoms, and of course they don’t claim this is a cure. But the study showed many children coped better with certain vitamin supplements. I’m sure you’ve looked into these published works but sometimes there’s just so many. Dr’s in Houston’s medical center are fabulous… Just thought I’d share. God bless you.

    2. Dee Dee

      Andrea, dear sister in Christ, I submit that it would be beneficial for you to do a little more research. Your belief that ADHD is real will not change your dear daughter’s circumstance. I believe you deeply love and care for your daughter. You are concerned about the welfare of your daughter because you invested the time, energy and money necessary to help her. However, if you fail to consider that there could be some other explanation for the problems you have observed, you are doing her a disservice. YOU are her greatest champion and guardian. If pills cured ALL problems, no one would be sick. I challenge you to watch YouTube: (1) Psychiatry the Fraud and (2) Making a Killing Documentary. Praying for your family.

    3. Lilie

      Let me just say, that I am in TOTAL agreement with this doctor and what he is about to publish. Why ? Because I am one of those parents who have been constantly told since my son was of a very young age he has this ” ADHD” . It was pushed by the school to get him ” diagnosed” and after 3 different Phycologist visit, they all determined that he had it. ( I never have claimed it on his life and still do not claim it.) but the visit that determined that I would never ever again consider , thinking of medication was his second visit. The Dr gave us this info about another child. He said the school was complaining about his “Behavior” . He got diagnosed by all his symptoms. Then his father having notice that he had the same symptoms went to his dr. He told him that he has been having a hard time focusing at work so got a diagnosis of adult adhd. So when he the father took the meds, he totally was able to focus at work, but his side work as an artist was affected so badly, he was not able to create. See these meds mess with the brain and how one is able to be creative ,imaginative , it numbs it. That is why all these kids that get on it, are like spaced out. And I can tell you with assurance, that my son is very active, and I have to speak to him all the time, but I would not change my son and his God given characteristics , traits, and God given abilities no matter how he may struggle at times to stay on task. And yes the doctors on paper have given him a “diagnosis” of ADHD, and for him to receive extra help in school, With IEPs I have used this “evaluation” to my son’s advantage but never to put him on medication, like the school tried to push on me and my husband for years, since kindergarten. He is now in 5 th grade, and he is getting there. And all for the glory of my God, my King, and Savior, and Healer. No it is not easy, and yes it tests your patience, but you can do it without these, depressive, mind altering, suicidal medications. That is why my son’s verse especially when he was in elementary was ” I can do all things with Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:13 . Pray hard, and fight the good fight.

  6. STILLHERE

    Wow…I knew something was wrong with these drugs.I remember when I was younger, doctors diagnosed my brother with “ADHD”. They wrote my mom a prescription (for ritlin), saying that it would make him less hyper andconcentrate better in school. Well, needless to say, my brother was only on the medication for about a week before my mom pulled the plug. You see, the drugs did make my brother less hyper, but, only because he was too depressed to wanna do anything. I still remember the sight of him sitting outside on our front porch steps crying, because he said’ he was sad for some reason and didn’t know why’…

    1. Dee Dee

      Thank God your mother trusted her own maternal instincts and not the school and doctor. She likely saved your brothers life. It’s not always easy to challenge these so called authorities, especially when they are in a position of power. I encourage you to see YouTube (1) Making a Killing Documentary, and (2) Psychiatry the Fraud. Share your story with others to break this growing trend.

  7. Pastor Rudolph Palmer

    As a spiritual leader prayer over your children is always in order before turning them over to the Script Machine which is ” Big Medicine ” . While praying , seek thier School Counselors and Teachers opinion along with your family Doctor before moving straight to meds ! Kids are kids are kids ! There were inattentive kids in school in the 60’s , 70’s and 80’s without doping them up right away.
    Parents i see today have switched from having ” UHF ” TV watch thier kids to having ” XBOX GAMES ” watch thier kids and Ritalin as babysitter !
    A Dr recently told our family that ” We are not in the healing business but the referal business. Referal and script for you to come back again.
    Pray and read the Psalms over your children !!

  8. Niya

    If I didn’t obey God and homeschool my kids, my son would have been diagnosed for sure with ADHD. Instead, he is now at age 7, a mostly independent, quiet, focused student who aspires to be a scientist. He has also completed his 2nd grade curriculum in four months! My philosophy is this: It takes a Bible and a belt, you can call this the Bible Belt! But on a serious note, I pray over my children, encourage them to focus and use the big brains God has gifted them with. I also research ways and good curricula to implement for their learning needs and my sanity. God is the answer to the woes of child rearing and the inner issues within us all.

  9. Dee Dee

    Real problems- wrong diagnosis. The prescriptions only benefit the pharmaceutical companies and the charlatans who prescribe them. Consider other problem-creating factors: nutritional deficiencies, food additives (preservatives, dyes), inadequate sleep, hormonal imbalances, traumatic experiences/losses, over-stimulation (too many activities, clubs, lessons), under-stimulation (boredom, classwork not challenging or interesting) too much media exposure, or lack of exercise. IMPORTANT. See YouTube: (1) Making A Killing Documentary and (2) Psychiatry the Fraud.

  10. Lilie

    Let me just say, that I am in TOTAL agreement with this doctor and what he is about to publish. Why ? Because I am one of those parents who have been constantly told since my son was of a very young age he has this ” ADHD” . It was pushed by the school to get him ” diagnosed” and after 3 different Phycologist visit, they all determined that he had it. ( I never have claimed it on his life and still do not claim it.) but the visit that determined that I would never ever again consider , thinking of medication was his second visit. The Dr gave us this info about another child. He said the school was complaining about his “Behavior” . He got diagnosed by all his symptoms. Then his father having notice that he had the same symptoms went to his dr. He told him that he has been having a hard time focusing at work so got a diagnosis of adult adhd. So when he the father took the meds, he totally was able to focus at work, but his side work as an artist was affected so badly, he was not able to create. See these meds mess with the brain and how one is able to be creative ,imaginative , it numbs it. That is why all these kids that get on it, are like spaced out. And I can tell you with assurance, that my son is very active, and I have to speak to him all the time, but I would not change my son and his God given characteristics , traits, and God given abilities no matter how he may struggle at times to stay on task. And yes the doctors on paper have given him a “diagnosis” of ADHD, and for him to receive extra help in school, With IEPs I have used this “evaluation” to my son’s advantage but never to put him on medication, like the school tried to push on me and my husband for years, since kindergarten. He is now in 5 th grade, and he is getting there. And all for the glory of my God, my King, and Savior, and Healer. No it is not easy, and yes it tests your patience, but you can do it without these, depressive, mind altering, suicidal medications. That is why my son’s verse especially when he was in elementary was ” I can do all things with Christ who strengthens me” Philippians 4:13 .

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