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Critical Issue Analysis: Is Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder a Real Disorder Essay

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity is a diagnosis very common in society. Many children are diagnosed with this disorder and then are given prescription medication to counter-act the hyperactivity. The debate present is if this is a disorder or not. The National Institute of Mental Health says it is, but Rogers H. Wright says no. Both sides present facts and opinions as well as strengths and weaknesses supporting their side in the following analysis.

Two Facts Presented by Both Sides The National Institute of Mental Health states that Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity, also known as ADHD, is a real disorder. One fact presented by that National Institute of Mental Health is that scientists are finding more evidence that ADHD is a diagnosable condition that stems from biological causes. These studies indicate that ADHD is strongly influenced by genetics and that the children with ADHD show brain differences compared with those who do not.

Another fact presented is that to assess if an individual has ADHD, specialists have to compare the person’s pattern of behavior development against a set of criteria and characteristics of the disorder. Rogers H. Wright states that ADHD is not a real disorder. A fact stated by Wright is that ADHD hyperactivity and distractibility are behaviors most commonly symptoms of excessive fatigue or stress, rather than signs of psychological disorder (Hagin, 2007).

Another fact stated by Wright is that whether or not someone has ADHD is a judgment best made only after exhaustive study by pediatrics, psychology, neurology, and psychiatry, which often seem to eager to medicate (2007). Two Opinions Presented by Both Sides Along with the facts presented by both sides, opinions are also present. The National Institute of Mental Health states an opinion that although children can experience hyperactivity, distractibility, poor concentration, or impulsivity, for children with ADHD, these types of behaviors often affect they performance in school, social relationships, or their lives at home.

Another opinion stated by the National Institute of Mental Health is a correct diagnosis often resolves confusion about the reasons for the childs’ problems. This in turn allows the child and family to move forward in their lives with accurate information on what is wrong and what can be done to help. Wright also has opinions on the matter of ADHD. One opinion stated by Wright is that ADHD is another fad diagnosis that does not exist, similar to a fad labeled “minimal brain syndrome” (Hagin, 2007).

A second opinion stated by Wright is that a major disservice is caused by the elevation of nonspecific symptoms, and diagnoses of ADHD lumps together individuals with very different needs and problems, and attempting to treat the problems with an entity such as a one-pill-fits-all response can cause more harm than good (2007). Strengths and Weaknesses Associated with Pro Side A strength associated with the pro side is that individuals who previously had a hard time concentrating and focusing on their work or life in general are given a better possibility to function normally.

By labeling ADHD as a disorder, more research is conducted for treatment to enhance the life of the individuals with ADHD. A weakness associated with labeling ADHD as a real disorder is that individuals are more liable to be diagnosed when exhibiting just one or two symptoms and are medicated for ADHD, even if they do not have this disorder. When an individual is thought to be hyperactive or have trouble focusing, physicians may depict this as ADHD and prescribe medication not actually needed. Strengths and Weaknesses Associated with Con Side

A strength associated with the con side is that individuals exhibiting hyperactivity or attention deficit are not automatically categorized as being ADHD and not automatically medicated as such. Physicians will look to find more underlying causes for the individual’s symptoms and take other routes to properly treat the patients. A weakness associated with not labeling ADHD as a real disorder is that individuals may never get the proper treatment to help their hyperactivity or attention deficit. Individuals may go longer before they find the proper course of treatment, which in turn could harm them in the future.

During this time individuals may be made fun of or ridiculed because of their inability to function as everyone else, causing emotional distress. Credibility of Authors Both authors are extremely creditable. The National Institute of Mental Health is an accredited institute that studies disorders and their effects on individuals. Rogers H. Wright is a psychologist who studies individuals and the disorders that affect him or her, including over-diagnosis and overmedication. Both authors have knowledge in disorders such as ADHD and can provide unbiased yet sound information including facts and opinions.

Which Side is Right in the Writer’s Perspective Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder is a disorder that has been come more common amongst children. Many times children who exhibit the slightest symptom of hyperactivity are diagnosed as having ADHD. Individuals are medicated to calm him or her to fit society’s standards. Many times individuals, especially children, grow out of the hyperactivity phase. These individuals may never have to be medicated, but as long as ADHD is considered a real disorder, individuals will receive medication prior to other forms of treatment.

To constantly medicate an individual on the premise that he or she is too hyper or unable to concentrate can be damaging in ways such as health wise, mentally, and emotional. The Side of Supported by Contemporary Research There is continual debate amongst contemporary research if ADHD is a real disorder. Depending on who is asked, some psychiatrists will say that ADHD is real whereas others will not. There is misguided believe regarding what can be considered ADHD and what symptoms are ADHD symptoms and not just children being children.

Studies will be ongoing to determine a better measure of standard for determining if an individual’s diagnosis of ADHD is accurate or if the individual is only exhibiting some of the symptoms that he or she eventually could outgrow and overcome. Conclusion Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder is witnessed in society without a second glance. Children with slight case of hyper activeness are labeled as ADHD. Individuals who are having a hard time in school are defined as having ADHD. The debate is if a disorder is present and continuous.

Determining if a person is warranted of having the label of having ADHD is somewhat cloudy and can be hard to come by. The National Institute of Mental Health and Rogers H. Wright have opposing views in regard to the validity of calling ADHD a disorder. Questions are still raised every day regarding what construes to having ADHD. As physicians work together and work on trying to understand more areas of what the underlying causes of ADHD may be, there may be less need for medication and more ways to help individuals in other ways.

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