Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a behavior problem that is characterized by hyperactivity, inattention, restlessness, and impulsivity and, until recently, was diagnosed primarily in children. It had been first defined as Hyperkinetic Disorder of Childhood in 1957 and was popularly known as hyperactivity or syndrome that is hyperactive it had been renamed ADHD in 1987. The renaming also represented a shift in focus from hyperactive behavior into the inattention as a major characteristic of the disorder.
The centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimates 7 percent of school-age (6-10) children have ADHD, with a ratio of 3 to 1 boys to girls in the United States. White children generally have higher rates of ADHD diagnosis than minority children. In the past few years the definition of ADHD has broadened. Now, along with school-age children, ADHD is diagnosed in preschool children, adolescents, and adults, which contributes to the prevalence that is rising.
The most common hospital treatment for ADHD has been psychoactive medications, especially ethyl-phenidate (Ritalin) and other stimulant medications (Cylert, Adderall, and Concerta). Treatment rates have increased enormously in modern times; in 2004 the Department of health insurance and Human Services estimated 5 million children ages 5 to 17 were treated for ADHD in 2000-02, up from 2.6 million in 1994. The diagnosis and treatment of ADHD is much higher in the usa than in other countries, but evidence suggests that considering that the 1990s it’s been rising far away as well, for example, in the uk.
The causes of ADHD are not well understood, although various theories have now been offered, including dietary, genetic, psychological, and social ones. In the past 2 decades, medical researchers have reported genetic susceptibilities to ADHD and discovered variations in brain imaging results from individuals with ADHD and individuals without ADHD. Although bio-medical theories of ADHD predominate, what causes ADHD are still largely unknown. Some contend that just because you will find biological differences when considering children with ADHD and other children, what exactly is observed may be a reflection of differences in temperament instead of a disorder that is specific.
ADHD and its own treatment have already been controversial at the very least since the 1970s.
Critics have expressed anxiety about the drugging of schoolchildren, contending that ADHD is only a label for childhood behavior that is deviant. Others grant that some children might have a neurological disorder, but maintain that there’s been an overdiagnosis of ADHD. Some educators and parents have raised concerns about adverse effects from long-term use of stimulant medications from time to time. Child psychiatrists see ADHD as the utmost common childhood psychiatric disorder and consider psychoactive medication treatment as well established and safe. Parent and consumer groups, such as CHADD (Children and Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), tend to offer the perspective that is medical of.
Because the 1990s there is a rise that is significant the diagnosis and remedy for adult ADHD. Whereas childhood ADHD is normally parent or school identified, adult ADHD seems to be largely self-identified. Some researchers have noted that many adults that are apparently successful an ADHD diagnosis and medication treatment because of learning about the disorder from professionals, the media essay writing website free, or others, and then seeing their very own life problems reflected in the description of ADHD (e.g., disorganized life, inability to sustain attention, moving from job to job). Adult ADHD remains controversial, however. Many psychiatrists have embraced adult ADHD as a major social problem, with claims of tens of huge amounts of dollars in lost productivity and household income as a result of disorder, whereas critics have suggested it really is “the medicalization of underperformance.”
Sociologists view ADHD as a classic case of the medicalization of deviant behavior, defining a previously nonmedical problem as a medical one therefore the treatment of ADHD as a kind of medical social control.
Whereas some have noticed that when a problem becomes medicalized it really is less stigmatized, because its origin is observed as physiological or biomedical rather than as linked to behavior that is volitional others point out the social consequences of medicalizing children’s behavior problems. Some have suggested that medicalizing behavior that is deviant ADHD individualizes complex social problems and allows for powerful types of medical social control (medications) to be utilized. Secondary gain, accruing social benefits from a diagnosis that is medical is also a problem with ADHD. You will find reports of adolescents seeking an ADHD diagnosis to achieve learning disability status in order to have certain benefits, such as for instance untimed tests or alternative assignments. From a sociological view, the meaning of ADHD is a prime exemplory case of diagnostic expansion, the widening definition of a recognized diagnosis. For some, ADHD happens to be deemed a lifelong disorder, with an expanding age range for diagnosis (from preschool to adult) and a low threshold for psychoactive medication treatment. Though it can be done that the behaviors characteristic of ADHD are increasing because of some kind of social cause, it really is more likely that an escalating number of individuals are now being identified, labeled, and treated as having ADHD.