An article published in the Medical Journal of Australia is warning that over prescribing psychostimulants for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder or ADHD can lead to increased rates of misuse, which would eventually lead to health issues that include anxiety, insomnia and ultimately, cardiovascular problems.
Careful assessment before diagnosis needed
According to a report by ABC News, the article was penned by Newcastle researcher Dr. Adrian Dunlop. Dr. Dunlop said patients must be carefully assessed before being diagnosed in order to limit misuse of ADHD drugs or methylphenidate.
Methylphenidate is a central nervous system stimulant, and taking too much of it can overstimulate users to the point where they can’t sleep and find it very hard to stay still, says Dr. Dunlop. He added that taking too much of the drug can lead to heart attacks and stroke.
At present, there are no Australian guidelines for the diagnosis and treatment of ADHD. For now, the Royal Australian and New Zealand Psychiatrists are following Canadian and British guidelines.
Read the article in full here.
Over prescribing ADHD drugs lazy and convenient
That’s the problem with most doctors when it comes to diagnosing ADHD, especially in children. Truth be told, not all medical experts agree that ADHD is actually a real disease. While we can leave the science to the experts, we must take a stand against the seemingly common practice of many doctors to just take the lazy route and prescribe methylphenidate to any child brought in for being a bit rowdier than the next kid.
As Dr. Dunlop is emphatically pointing out, methylphenidate is a stimulant. Cocaine and ice fall under this category, too, in case you have forgotten. While its adverse effects on the human body may come at a lesser degree than ice and cocaine, there is no doubt that methylphenidate will still have consequences on the user, and that’s something we certainly don’t want for our children. Further, what are the long-term consequences as these children grow up and enter the workforce?