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Parenting a Child with LD or ADHD

ADHD in NC


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Joined: Nov 03, 2005
Posts: 69140
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Posted Feb 06, 2002 at 7:42:53 AM
Subject: ADHD in NC

Anyone else disturbed by this?

One in 10 North Carolina Kids Given ADHD Status Mon Feb 4, 1:24 PM ET
By Jacqueline Stenson

NEW YORK (Reuters Health) - As many as 10% of North Carolina school children have been diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and many of those youngsters are taking medication for the condition, researchers report.

This percentage is significantly higher than national estimates of 3% to 5%. Yet the new report, as well as a handful of other regional studies, indicate that ADHD diagnosis and treatment may be much more common than previously thought, the investigators note.

"We found that 10% of elementary school children...had received a diagnosis of ADHD by a doctor or psychologist and 7% of the children were being treated for ADHD with medication," study author Dr. Andrew Rowland told Reuters Health.

The new findings "make me question whether the 3% to 5% figure could possibly be valid," said Rowland, an epidemiologist at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque, who conducted the study while at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. The results add fuel to ongoing concerns that too many youngsters are being treated for the disorder.

"Medication treatment often is very helpful for children who have ADHD," Rowland said. "But on the other hand, if it's not followed up well and the diagnosis is not made according to standardized criteria, that's when you start to have problems."

Symptoms of ADHD include inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity that can lead to academic underachievement and troubled family relationships.

In the study, conducted from 1997 to 1999, parents of 6,099 children in grades 1 through 5 at 17 public elementary schools in Johnston County, North Carolina, completed a survey asking them whether their children had ever been diagnosed with ADHD and whether they were currently taking medication to treat the disorder.
Results published in the February issue of the American Journal of Public Health, journal of the American Public Health Association, showed that 607 children, or 10%, had been diagnosed with ADHD and 434, or 7%, were taking Ritalin or other treatment medication.

Boys were three times more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than girls, and both sexes were about equally likely to receive medication after diagnosis. However, black and Hispanic children received fewer prescriptions than white youngsters, perhaps because they had less access to healthcare, the researchers suggest.

Johnston County has both rural and urban areas, and its ethnic population is similar to that of most of North Carolina, according to Rowland. As a result, he said, the findings probably apply to the rest of the state and perhaps neighboring states in the South as well.

He said his findings are in line with other regional studies, such as a 1995 Virginia study showing that 8% to 10% of young school children were taking medication for ADHD.

However, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fourth Edition (DSM-IV), a book widely used by doctors to diagnose mental illnesses, estimates the prevalence of ADHD at 3% to 5%, Rowland noted. The problem, he said, is that solid national data on ADHD do not exist.

"We really need other studies like ours and national monitoring data to know whether the experience we saw is unusual," Rowland said. "Having that information is important for understanding the dimensions of the impact of ADHD."

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Anonymous
Joined Aug 21, 2014
Posts: 69140

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Posted:Feb 06, 2002 8:05:24 AM

It comes as no surprise to me that this is the case. My son is 7 and in 2nd grade. I requested an LD assesment due to Independent testing that was done on him at age 6 which showed a perceptual ages ranging from 13 yrs old to 4.5yrs old...indicating a Gifted/LD child. He happily is devouring the Harry Potter books...but cannot write well and cannot spell.

The school immediately gave me the ADHD assesment and told me to take him to his pediatrician. What does his pediatrician, who has only seen him ONCE for a physical know about MY child to diagnose him as ADHD!!

My son's "behaviour problems" are: He reads when the teacher is teaching (yet can answer the questions she asks), he is the last to get out his books/supplies when told, he swings his arms while walking in line. HELLOO! he is 7!!!

What makes me most angry is my friends 7yr old who is in the Accelerated Gifted program and does the SAME things is NOT considered ADHD! Why? Because he is not "labeled" as LD??

I refused the ADHD assesment. This just really burns me.

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Anonymous
Joined Aug 21, 2014
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Posted:Feb 06, 2002 3:36:30 PM

"17 public elementary schools in Johnston County, North Carolina, completed a survey"

To generalize that to the entire state is a real stretch! Perhaps that is the routine in that county, but it's not in mine. In an elementary school of 500, that would mean 50 diagnosed and 35 taking meds. Right! I've been at several different elementary schools and the numbers taking medication are NOT that high. Yes, that school system may make referrals and there may be a cooperative doctor in that county involved, but no way can you generalize that to the entire state.

Janis

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Anonymous
Joined Aug 21, 2014
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Posted:Mar 04, 2002 8:22:36 PM

Thank you G'sMomma, I am glad to know that everybody notices how some kids just draw bad attention to themselves. It is not their fault. I have watched outside my sons class a couple of times just observing. One time, I noticed atleast 6-7 kids tipping back in their chair. Not only did this frightened me because I felt at any moment, someone was going bust their head open, but I am thinking of all the times my son had brought notes home saying that he lost points for leaning back in the chair. ??? To top that, as I was standing there watching this continue, my child bends over to pick up his pencil off the floor. My gosh did that get the teachers attention! She yells across the room, "What are you doing" before he said anything thing she tells him to take a point. I have spent the last 8 years of being told that I am crazy, that there is no way that people would single out my id like that. I tried to ignore it for so long. This past Christmas I happen to have a Video camera. I didnt realize what a good tool this would be. As all my families children were up to no good most of the time, everytime my son got close to something he was immediately noticed by the all the adults in the room including myself. I admit, I have singled him out or notice more of what he is doing, I thought it was just because he is my kid. So there I had it showed it to some of my friends and they were totally shocked at the things they totally did not see and how many times all eyes were on my son. So I had heard of kinesiology and learned a little about peoples ora's ( not sure of spelling) I took my son to one to see if he had some sort of chemistry that drew people to him like that, she said definately! So I am going thru the same thing, I dont have my son on meds but I think he has done wonderfully on herbal alternatives. Its slower acting, but even he says how much better he feels. And by the way, he was diagnosed ADHD with a 30 minute session with a doctor who had never seem him before and a check off sheet, you know the one that asks the multitute of questions regarding impulsiveness, attentiveness, I have just realized too that when I am stressed out like I am now, I have the same symptons. I guarantee you I could go to the Dr and get a script tomorrow. Thats scary.

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