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Are Black parents in denial about ADHD?

caines | 1/24/2013, 4:30 a.m.

The history of ADHD

While ADHD wasnt always recognized, diagnosed or treated as much as it is now, doctors have known about it for some time. It is believed that some famous historical figures, including Mozart, Da Vinci and Ben Franklin suffered some form of it. In 1902, Sir George Frederick Still first described children with ADHD symptoms as having a defect of moral control. In the mid-1960s, the NIMH began awarding grants to researchers to study the effectiveness of stimulants for children with ADHD symptoms. Ritalin became the drug of choice for emotionally disturbed children in 1963 but faced an anti-Ritalin movement in the the mid-1970s. Most notably, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 allowed for students with ADHD to get additional help and services at school to help them succeed.

ADHD in adults

According to The American Psychiatric Association, ADHD in untreated adults can cause numerous mental and physical health problems, difficulties with work and finances and put strain on relationships. Untreated it leaves millions of children and adults misunderstood and unnecessarily floundering, even incapacitated, writes Dr. Edward M. Hallowell, author of the seminal text on ADHD, Driven to Distraction. Many people [adults] with ADHD medicate themselves with alcohol, marijuana or cocaine in different ways each of these drugs calms the person down. But only in the short run. Thats why psychotherapy and medication are key to adults understanding themselves and restructuring their lives. By D. Kevin McNeirkmcneir@miamitimesonline.com