Just Wait Until “Adult ADHD” Rates Catch Up

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) rates are going up. Hardly a shocking finding. If you invent a disease, disease rates are likely to go up rather than down without an effective way to expose you, and with you, it. As reported in Psychiatric Annals, Rate of ADHD diagnosis increased in past decade, researchers looking at trends among 842,830 schoolchildren aged 5 to 11 found the following.

According to the researchers, rates of ADHD diagnosis were 2.5% in 2001 vs. 3.1% in 2010, a relative increase of 24%. During the same period, the rate of ADHD diagnosis increased among whites (4.7% to 5.6%; RR=1.3; 95% CI, 1.2-1.4), blacks (2.6% to 4.1%; RR=1.7; 95% CI, 1.5-1.9) and Hispanics (1.7% to 2.5%; RR=1.6; 95% CI, 1.5-1.7). Rates of diagnosis among Asian/Pacific Islander and other racial groups remained unchanged.

We’re more hyperactive then in 2010 than we were in 2001, that is to say, that boys will be boys, and not only will boys be boys, but girls will be girls. Confused? You’re not alone. Or to be more on target, children will be children.

The rate increase among blacks was largely due to a growing number of girls with an ADHD diagnosis (RR=1.9; 95% CI, 1.5-2.3). Boys were more likely than girls to be diagnosed with ADHD, but study results indicated that the sex gap may be closing among blacks. The researchers also observed a much higher rate of ADHD diagnosis among children living in high-income ($70,000 per year or more) households (P<.001).

Just imagine, sex equality in pathology. Things must be improving for folks of color out there, wouldn’t you say? Or, maybe not. The good news is the arrival of the spoiled brat syndrome so you folks out there in the ghetto don’t have to feel like you’re alone in your misery. Or, maybe not. Mommy and daddy uptown can buy success for junior, can’t they? …Oh, well…Them’s the breaks.

“Although the reasons for increasing ADHD rates are not well understood, contributing factors may include heightened ADHD awareness among parents and physicians, increased use of screening and other preventive services, and variability in surveillance methods among institutions,” the researchers wrote.

Okay dokey. If awareness induces contagion, no wonder they say ‘ignorance is bliss’. Screening for figurative disease is going to increase the incidence of figurative disease. Undoubtedly. Calling screening and miseducation preventive is the real kicker though. Rates go up, and you’re preventing. Oh, yeah? Uh huh. Alluding to surveillance is more to the point. This isn’t about letting children be children, this is about training the next generation of corporate bureaucrats, and maybe, just maybe, we’ve got better things to be doing in the first place.

One factor  not listed, although the authors did mention not having any published ties to pharmaceutical companies, is the influence of drug markets on this increase. I can’t imagine it doesn’t have anything to do with stimulant, and the miscalled ‘performance enhancing’, drug sales, does it? Check out stock exchange figures sometime. I reckon, if anything, ADHD treatment drug makers aren’t suffering. The wall street party goes on and on, even if from here on out at a tightly guarded secret location.

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3 Responses

  1. Plenty of parents out there wondering why their child isn’t fitting their expectations of reality. Plenty of people lacking wonder and awe at that which is different from them. Plenty of same parents, harbingers of intolerance, create a problem where there is none.

    People lacking drama in their lives, create problems where there is none. Sad when kids pay the price.

    Also this psychiatric labelling crisis is an extension of Us versus Them mentality. Sad when Us versus Them is happening within the family unit.

    • True enough, you’ve got plenty of guilty parents creating problems for innocent kids.

      Well, I’m sure you and everybody else has heard the one about the dysfunctional family. There’s that, and there’s also the family scapegoat. The family scapegoat is often the family member who ends up in mental health mistreatment. You don’t get so mistreated so often when there are other family members coming to your defense.

      You’re right on target about any us and them mentality. There is the mentality of the abused us to the abuser them, or the “odd” them to the “normal” us, but both of these groupings are actually the same. Using labels we forget we are dealing with one grouping, homo sapiens, and every homo sapiens is more similar to another homo sapiens than they are to any chimpanzee, our nearest kin in the animal kingdom.

  2. Just want to say I love this blog. I feel less alone when I read it. I feel hopeful when I read it. The air feels fresher in my lungs when I read it. Every word renews my spirit. And I need that. Being held hostage by a troupe of angry monkeys does that to you, which reminds me…most of all I laugh and leave these pages a better person. Always. Everytime.

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