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Rise in youth hyperactivity prescriptions

Extract from the Independent:

The number of prescriptions for drugs to treat hyperactivity in children is on the rise, figures suggested today.

…Data obtained by the Conservatives found more than 420,000 prescriptions were written for under-16s in 2007 – up 33 per cent on 2005 figures. More than 40,000 prescriptions were also written for 16 to 18 year-olds, up 51 per cent since 2005.

In 2007, the NHS spent more than £17 million on the drugs….

Shadow health minister, Anne Milton, said: “We already know that our children suffer the lowest levels of well-being in Europe.

“This data shows that, increasingly, health professionals are prescribing drugs to treat child mental health problems, when evidence suggests that talking therapies can have an equal, if not better effect.

“These drugs have significant risks when given to children and young people, making this rise extremely concerning.”

A spokesman for the Department of Health said: “Nice (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) guidance is clear ……. Treatment with prescribed drugs should only be started after a specialist in ADHD has thoroughly assessed the child or adolescent and confirmed the diagnosis.

“Once treatment has been started it should be monitored by a GP.

“Drug therapy should be one part of a comprehensive treatment programme that includes advice and support to parents and teachers.”

It is documented that using audio-visual stimulation (AVS) can help with learning and behavioural difficulties. You can read some article on brainwave training and ADD here.  The Brain Buddy is a brainwave training system which can be used at home and may help with ADD/HD

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