Tag Archives: ADHD

Pesticide Exposure and ADHD – Researcher Urges: ‘Buy Organic’

Pesticides in kids linked to ADHD
Researcher advises parents to buy organic, wash produce

Exposure to pesticides used on common kid-friendly foods — including frozen blueberries, fresh strawberries and celery — appears to boost the chances that children will be diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, new research shows.

Youngsters with high levels of pesticide residue in their urine, particularly from widely used types of insecticide such as malathion, were more likely to have ADHD, the behavior disorder that often disrupts school and social life, scientists in the United States and Canada found.

Kids with higher-than-average levels of one pesticide marker were nearly twice as likely to be diagnosed with ADHD as children who showed no traces of the poison.

“I think it’s fairly significant. A doubling is a strong effect,” said Maryse F. Bouchard, a researcher at the University of Montreal in Quebec and lead author of the study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.

The take-home message for parents, according to Bouchard: “I would say buy organic as much as possible,” she said. “I would also recommend washing fruits and vegetables as much as possible.”

Diet is a major source of pesticide exposure in children, according to the National Academy of Sciences, and much of that exposure comes from favorite fruits and vegetables. In 2008, detectable concentrations of malathion were found in 28 percent of frozen blueberry samples, 25 percent of fresh strawberry samples a government report found. Full Story

Advertisements

Medication Madness in Young Children

An American Phenomenon: The Widespread Psychiatric Drugging of Infants and Toddlers

The United States has become the psychiatric drugging capital of the world, medicating children at a younger and younger age.

The United States has become the psychiatric drugging capital of the world for kids with children being medicated at a younger and younger age. Medicaid records in some states show infants less than a year old on drugs for mental disorders.

The use of powerful antipsychotics with privately insured children, aged 2 through 5 in the US, doubled between 1999 and 2007, according to a study of data on more than one million children with private health insurance in the January, 2010, “Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.”

The number of children in this age group diagnosed with bipolar disorder also doubled over the last decade, Reuters reported.

Of antipsychotic-treated children in the 2007 study sample, the most common diagnoses were pervasive developmental disorder or mental retardation (28.2%), ADHD (23.7%), and disruptive behavior disorder (12.9%).

The study reported that fewer than half of drug treated children received a mental health assessment (40.8%), a psychotherapy visit (41.4%), or a visit with a psychiatrist (42.6%) during the year of antipsychotic use.

“Antipsychotics, which are being widely and irresponsibly prescribed for American children–mostly as chemical restraints–are shown to be causing irreparable harm,” warned Vera Hassner Sharav, president of the Alliance for Human Research Protection, in a February 26, 2010 InfoMail.

“These drugs have measurable severe hazardous effects on vital biological systems, including: cardiovascular adverse effects that result in shortening lives; metabolic adverse effects that induce diabetes and the metabolic syndrome,” she wrote. “Long-term use of antipsychotics has been shown to result in metabolic syndrome in 40% to 50% of patients.”
Full Story

The Wholesale Drugging of Children

From the Frontline film: Medicating Kids

Death from Ritalin: The Truth Behind ADHD

Ritalin: A Dangerous Addictive Drug

Two new stories in the press about the dangers of Ritalin, though this is not new news. Ritalin is classified as a Schedule II drug, in the same class as cocaine, yet children are still being drugged with it.

Ritalin May Cause Changes In The Brain’s Reward Areas

The study highlights the need for more research into methylphenidate’s long-term effects on the brain, the researchers say. The findings were published February 3 in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The researchers, led by Yong Kim, senior research associate, and Paul Greengard, Vincent Astor Professor and head of the Laboratory of Molecular and Cellular Neuroscience, exposed mice to two weeks of daily injections of cocaine or methylphenidate. They then examined reward areas of the brain for changes in dendritic spine formation — related to the formation of synapses and the communication between nerve cells — and the expression of a protein called delta Fos B, which has been implicated in the long-term actions of addictive drugs.

Both drugs increased dendritic spine formation and the expression of delta Fos B; however, the precise patterns of their effects were distinct. They differed in the types of spines affected, the cells that were affected and the brain regions. In some cases there was overlap between the two drugs, and in some cases methylphenidate produced greater effects than cocaine, for example, on protein expression in certain regions. Both methylphenidate and cocaine are in the class of drugs known as psychostimulants.

“Methylphenidate, which is thought to be a fairly innocuous compound, can have structural and biochemical effects in some regions of the brain that can be even greater than those of cocaine,” says Kim. “Further studies are needed to determine the behavioral implications of these changes and to understand the mechanisms by which these drugs affect synapse formation.”

The Truth About Ritalin: Dangerous Drug for ADHD

Unless we live under giant boulders, most of us have heard about Tom Cruise’s recent appearance on the Today Show with host Matt Lauer. In response to direct questioning, Cruise boldly expressed his v iews on psychiatry, declaring it a pseudoscience and denouncing the use of Ritalin.

His communication lacked the slick social veneer that would have made it more palatable to the masses, and thankfully so–by ruffling some feathers he started a much-needed media firestorm on the subject of psychiatry.

As a result, issues that much of society has conveniently put in an old box marked “someone else’s responsibility” and placed in the back of the cultural closet are finally being brought to light.

Not the least of which is this country’s obsession with Ritalin, the drug of choice for psychiatrists everywhere.

So in the interest of shedding light on shadowy subjects, let’s follow in Mr. Cruise’s footsteps and keep that important conversation going.

Full Story

See Also:

New Risks Revealed in Drugging Children

New Risks Revealed in Drugging Children

ADHD drugs can cause hallucinations in some kids

Drugs for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder can cause children to have hallucinations even when taken as directed, U.S. government researchers said on Monday.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration researchers analyzed data from 49 clinical studies conducted by makers of the drugs and found they can cause psychosis and mania in some patients, including some with no obvious risk factors. In some cases, children hallucinated that worms, bugs or snakes were crawling on them.

“Patients and physicians should be aware of the possibility that psychiatric symptoms consistent with psychosis or mania” might arise in the course of treatment, Dr. Andrew Mosholder and colleagues wrote in the journal Pediatrics.

Their analysis provides fresh detail about known risks of the drugs, which include Novartis AG’s Ritalin and Focalin XR, Shire Plc’s Adderall XR and Daytrana patch, Johnson & Johnson’s Concerta, Eli Lilly and Co’s Strattera and Celltech Pharmaceuticals Inc’s Metadate CD.

It also includes data on Cephalon Inc’s modafinil, sold as Provigil, a narcolepsy drug that was rejected as an ADHD treatment in children.
FDA spokeswoman Sandy Walsh said the data formed the basis for recent warnings about psychiatric side effects that have been added to product labels in recent years.

Millions of children use drugs to treat symptoms of ADHD, which affects about three to seven percent of U.S. children.

Full Article

The first of the two video is from the Frontline film: Medicating Kids. The boy in this particular clip is on Focalin (among other drugs), one of the medications mentioned in the article above.

While this is a commendable documentary on the ill effects of drugging children, it fails to address nutritional and environmental issues.

The boy here is shown eating corn dogs and gatorade. From a September 26, 2007 Washington Post article, ‘public health advocates want the standards to ban the sale of Gatorade and Powerade, which typically contain as much as two-thirds the sugar of sodas and more sodium.” It also contains food coloring which has been shown to negatively impact behavior.

Hot dogs are flavor enhanced with MSG, a known neurotoxin, and nitrates, as well as red food coloring and a sundry of other unsavory ingredients.

The Wholesale Drugging of Children:

Nutrition & Behavior: Russell Blaylock, MD