The Debate Over Medicating Children with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

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Over the past several decades, highly skilled professionals have attempted to address several issues regarding antipsychotic drugs used to treat school-aged children with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). The distribution of these ADHD medications have steadily increased over the years, which has, on one hand, presented a possible solution to the escalating diagnosis of Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, and on the latter, brought into question the ethics and effectiveness of these medications. Health officials, parents, and the children themselves struggle to come to an agreement when deciding whether or not medication is the best solution. The Debate Over Medicating Children with Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity…show more content…
Other health threats such as cardiovascular risks are also not uncommon when using Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder medications. “Drug-naïve adolescents, defined as adolescents with no prior antipsychotic treatment or total lifetime antipsychotic usage fewer than 30 days experience changes in duration of the QT c (one’s heart rate) interval before and after 6 months of treatment” (Science Daily). This could potentially cause serious health complications and in some cases death. The last of the rare yet severe side effects implicated by ADHD medications is known as “abnormal involuntary movements”. These uncontrolled muscle movements are “more common with old antipsychotics than new-generation antipsychotics, which lead to problems participating in normal social and educational activities” (Science Daily). Even though this particular side effect is rare and often only seen when children use the antipsychotic drug, Risperdone (used for the treatment of Schizophrenia), it is necessary that the general public be warned. Overall, the main concerns regarding ADHD medications stem from the possible side effects as well as the potential threat of long lasting damage. Little research provides positive feedback for the long-term use of antipsychotic prescriptions. “There is evidence that coincides with the use of neuroleptic and other psychotropic medications making long-term, if not permanent, changes in brain structure
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