Drugging Our Children

October 20, 2006 at 3:22 am | Posted in Drugs | 8 Comments

Dude, what is with our nation and its love of pharmaceutical drugs? Apparently now there is talk about giving Ritalin to preschooers! How early do we want our children to be hooked on drugs? How early do we want our society to rely on drugs as a crutch, without apparently caring about the side-effects of changing the chemical composition of our bodies? We take drugs to get us to go to sleep, meanwhile we drink coffee and sodas—filled with caffeine—all day long and then wonder why we can’t sleep. We feed our infants fake meals instead of breastmilk, designed specifically for the child’s needs and then wonder why they don’t grow up well. We eat plenty of foods, so much so that we are now overweight, and then wonder why we need to rely on drugs to fix the consequences of overeating when we could be just fine if we but excercise. I’m done ranting. I think this direction is bad for America. We need to get to a more natural state.

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  1. one of my good friends in the USA, had a rough time in his teen years with drugs. I asked him how he ever got himself involved with them. He said that when he was younger in Primary School he started failing at his school work. His parents sent him to a psychologist who put him on pills for depression .. a Primary age school kid.

    I was flabbergasted.

  2. We’ll be giving Ritalin to pre-schoolers so long as our national culture of instant gratification demands it. Nobody wants to hear the doctor say “you suck as a parent” or “your kid is just a jerk”; they want a pill that makes it all better.

  3. My stepson was on Ritalin by the time he was three years old. Bill and I married when Jared was five, and I was appalled that they were giving drugs to this kid. Three weeks later, a true believer, I was meeting him at the door with a pill and a glass of water. He would have never have made it through elementary school without Ritalin.

    His first grade teacher didn’t believe he needed drugs, so at her urging, we stopped the drugs. She thought she could work with him. Six miserable weeks later, she called us and told us she was completely losing him in school and asked us to resume the drug.

    He stopped when he was 15, he just refused to take it anymore. He dropped out of school and started self medicating with marijuana and alcohol.

    I don’t think he got into drugs and alcohol because we drugged him as a child. I think we held off his problems with the drug.

    I don’t hold with wholesale dispensing of drugs to children, but I saw first hand the good it did for Jared.

    I don’t think Ritalin makes addicts of kids. I think kids with mental problems self medicate when they get older.

    The funny thing now is that Jared won’t use a drug such as Prozac, but he drinks a six pack every day, and uses all kinds of illegal drugs.

  4. Jesse,

    Right on. We’re a nation that no longer seems willing to take responsibility for our own actions, or realize that some things come at a cost, that some things are painful in life.

    Anne,

    I’m sorry to hear that about your step-son. It is hard to have to deal with such problems. Unfortunately, because he is now drinking heavily and using illegal drugs (whether or not it is related to his use of drugs from the start), he continues the cycle. I’m not as familiar with ADHD as others, but I looked at a definition to find the causes:

    What Causes ADHD?

    One of the first questions a parent will have is “Why? What went wrong?” “Did I do something to cause this?” There is little compelling evidence at this time that ADHD can arise purely from social factors or child-rearing methods. Most substantiated causes appear to fall in the realm of neurobiology and genetics. This is not to say that environmental factors may not influence the severity of the disorder, and especially the degree of impairment and suffering the child may experience, but that such factors do not seem to give rise to the condition by themselves.

    The parents’ focus should be on looking forward and finding the best possible way to help their child. Scientists are studying causes in an effort to identify better ways to treat, and perhaps someday, to prevent ADHD. They are finding more and more evidence that ADHD does not stem from the home environment, but from biological causes. Knowing this can remove a huge burden of guilt from parents who might blame themselves for their child’s behavior.

    Over the last few decades, scientists have come up with possible theories about what causes ADHD. Some of these theories have led to dead ends, some to exciting new avenues of investigation.
    Environmental Agents.

    Studies have shown a possible correlation between the use of cigarettes and alcohol during pregnancy and risk for ADHD in the offspring of that pregnancy. As a precaution, it is best during pregnancy to refrain from both cigarette and alcohol use.

    Another environmental agent that may be associated with a higher risk of ADHD is high levels of lead in the bodies of young preschool children. Since lead is no longer allowed in paint and is usually found only in older buildings, exposure to toxic levels is not as prevalent as it once was. Children who live in old buildings in which lead still exists in the plumbing or in lead paint that has been painted over may be at risk.
    Brain Injury.

    One early theory was that attention disorders were caused by brain injury. Some children who have suffered accidents leading to brain injury may show some signs of behavior similar to that of ADHD, but only a small percentage of children with ADHD have been found to have suffered a traumatic brain injury.
    Food Additives and Sugar.

    It has been suggested that attention disorders are caused by refined sugar or food additives, or that symptoms of ADHD are exacerbated by sugar or food additives. In 1982, the National Institutes of Health held a scientific consensus conference to discuss this issue. It was found that diet restrictions helped about 5 percent of children with ADHD, mostly young children who had food allergies.3 A more recent study on the effect of sugar on children, using sugar one day and a sugar substitute on alternate days, without parents, staff, or children knowing which substance was being used, showed no significant effects of the sugar on behavior or learning.4

    In another study, children whose mothers felt they were sugar-sensitive were given aspartame as a substitute for sugar. Half the mothers were told their children were given sugar, half that their children were given aspartame. The mothers who thought their children had received sugar rated them as more hyperactive than the other children and were more critical of their behavior.5
    Genetics.

    Attention disorders often run in families, so there are likely to be genetic influences. Studies indicate that 25 percent of the close relatives in the families of ADHD children also have ADHD, whereas the rate is about 5 percent in the general population.6 Many studies of twins now show that a strong genetic influence exists in the disorder.7

    Many causes seem to be the addition into the body of children things that affect the brain in a negative way, such as sugars, cigarettes, lead, and one thing that researchers haven’t yet looked at (which I would like to ask of doctors) is the amount of drugs taken by the mother throughout her life. What kind of effect does the addition of medication into the mother affect the child not yet conceived? Does medication that a mother takes in her entire life vanish away from her body? Does her body carry anything that might then go into her baby when she gets pregnant?

    We take drugs and medication with such ease before we even consider the possible long-term side effects of taking things that are not originally meant for us to take.

    I worry about the future of our humanity with all the additional chemicals we keep plugging into our bodies.

  5. ooooooooooo my god u r so right Way to get ur feelings out there

  6. well anyways sugar is basically the same as putting a knife to our childre’s throat and slitting it in half. Becuase those are the same results

  7. This web site explains all the ins and outs of the psychopharmaceutical industrial complex’s infiltration into our US school system and what is being done about it. This is what is really going on.

  8. Sandra,

    Thank you for sharing that website. Clearly the pharmaceutical industry, much like the tobacco industry, likes to start their “customers” early to ensure continued use.


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