Common questions and answers about ADHD. (Ask the Expert).
Q: I keep reading about teenagers abusing stimulant medication. How much of a concern is this?
A: In recent years, there has been a significant increase in the number of youth and adults diagnosed with ADHD Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) Definition
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a developmental disorder characterized by distractibility, hyperactivity, impulsive behaviors, and the inability to remain focused on tasks or and treated with stimulant medication. Not surprisingly, there has been a parallel increase in the number of anecdotal reports of abuse of these medications, primarily by high school students and college students. Although the stimulants are recognized as a safe and effective treatment for ADHD when taken as prescribed, these medications, like many others, nonetheless do have the potential for abuse. However, it's important to note that different stimulant medications may have different abuse potentials. Methylphenidate methylphenidate /meth·yl·phen·i·date/ (meth?il-fen´i-dat) a central stimulant, used in the form of the hydrochloride salt in the treatment of attention-deficit in children and narcolepsy. and amphetamine amphetamine (ămfĕt`əmēn), any one of a group of drugs that are powerful central nervous system stimulants. Amphetamines have stimulating effects opposite to the effects of depressants such as alcohol, narcotics, and barbiturates. tablets, for example, if crushed and snorted, or diluted in water and injected intravenously, can pose health risks. Conversely, it appears that Concerta does not readily lend itself to conversion to an easily abusable form. Fortunately, in the majority of cases of stimulant drug Noun 1. stimulant drug - a drug that temporarily quickens some vital process
amphetamine, pep pill, upper, speed - a central nervous system stimulant that increases energy and decreases appetite; used to treat narcolepsy and some forms of diversion--an ADHD patient sharing her/his medication with another individual, for example -- the medication is most likely to be taken orally with few if any significant adverse effects. Careful selection of a stimulant therapy, together with close monitoring, can ensure both treatment compliance and minimization of abuse potential. Patients, parents and clinicians should always take appropriate precautions in the storage and handling of these, and all other, medications.
Andrew Adesman, MD, Director Developmental & Behavioral Pediatrics Schneider Children's Hospital A children's hospital is a hospital which offers its services exclusively to children. The number of children's hospitals proliferated in the 20th century, as pediatric medical and surgical specialties separated from internal medicine and adult surgical specialties. New Hyde Park New Hyde Park, village (1990 pop. 9,728), Nassau co., SE N.Y., on Long Island; inc. 1927. It is a residential community with some manufacturing and truck farms. Nearby is the uninc. town of North New Hyde Park (1990 pop. 14,359). , NY
Q: What can parents do to help their grade school-age daughters with ADHD?
A: Parents need to be educated about this disorder as best they can, and so does the girl. It's important to anticipate problems that might occur, perhaps through role-playing. And it's never too early to discuss the pitfalls of risky behavior, such as substance abuse, smoking and sex. You need to take steps to take action; to move in a matter.
See also: Step to make sure that things don't go wrong, rather than leaving it up to your daughter. Make sure you get the homework assignments, maybe have them e-mailed to you. If your daughter keeps forgetting her books, get an extra set to keep at home. Work out an organizing system with your child that she can use, with your help. Overall, understand that while it's important for children to be autonomous and responsible, you can't expect a child who is biochemically unable to do that to do it. So you have to protect your child from her own problem.
In the classroom, children with ADHD need not only as much structure as possible, but they also need emotional support from ADHD-sensitive teachers who recognize the significant anxiety and fear of embarrassment these children experience. Helpful teaching strategies are ones that emphasize strengths to counteract the fears kids with ADHD have of "always messing up."
Robert J. Resnick, PhD, ABPP ABPP American Board of Professional Psychology
ABPP American Battlefield Protection Program
ABPP Agile Business Process Platform (I2 Technologies)
ABPP Activity-Based Protein Profiling Professor of Psychology Randolph-Macon College Randolph-Macon College, at Ashland, Va.; United Methodist; chartered 1830, opened 1832 at Boydton, Va., moved 1868; named for John Randolph and Nathaniel Macon. Originally a college for men, it has been coeducational since 1971. Ashland, VA.