- Note - Dr. Breggin will be Jeff's guest
on Thursday, May 7.
- For the purpose of alerting the public
to the dangers of stimulant drugs,
- this appendix to Talking Back to Ritalin
by Peter R. Breggin, M.D. may be
- reprinted without permission in unlimited
numbers provided that no fee is
- charged for the materials and that no
profit is made from the distribution.
- The source must be identified and the
material must be reproduced in its
- entirety, including this page.
- Talking Back to Ritalin by Peter R.
Breggin, M.D. is published by Common
- Courage Press, P.O. Box 702, Monroe,
Maine 04951. Phone: 1-800-497-3207.
- Several million children are being treated
with Ritalin and other
- stimulants on the grounds that they have
- disorder (ADHD) and suffer from inattention,
hyperactivity, or impulsivity.
- The stimulants include: Ritalin (methylphenidate),
Dexedrine and DextroStat
- (dextroamphetamine or d-amphetamine),
Adderall (d-amphetamine and
- amphetamine mixture), Desoxyn and Gradumet
(methamphetamine), and Cylert
- (pemoline). Except for Cylert, all of
these drugs have nearly identical
- effects and side effects. Ritalin and
the amphetamines can for most
- purposes be considered one type of drug.
- The number of children being drugged
has escalated several-fold in the
- last few years.
- Ritalin and amphetamine have almost
identical adverse effects on the
- brain, mind and behavior, including the
production of drug-induced
- behavioral disorders, psychosis, mania,
drug abuse, and addiction.
- Ritalin and amphetamine frequently
cause the very same problems they are
- supposed to treat--inattention, hyperactivity,
- A large percentage of children become
robotic, lethargic, depressed, or
- withdrawn on stimulants.
- Ritalin can cause permanent neurological
tics including Tourette's syndrome.
- Ritalin can retard growth in children
by disrupting the cycles of growth
- hormone released by the pituitary gland.
- The recent finding that Ritalin can
cause cancer in some animals was not
- taken seriously enough by the drug company
or the FDA.
- Ritalin routinely causes gross malfunctions
in the brain of the child.
- There is research evidence from a few
controlled scientific studies that
- Ritalin can cause shrinkage (atrophy)
or other permanent physical
- abnormalities in the brain.
- Withdrawal from Ritalin can cause emotional
- depression, exhaustion, and suicide.
This can make children seem
- psychiatrically disturbed and lead mistakenly
to increased doses of
- Ritalin is addictive and can become
a gateway drug to other addictions.
- It is a common drug of abuse among children
- ADHD and Ritalin are American and Canadian
medical fads. The U.S. uses
- 90% of the world's Ritalin. CibaGeneva
Pharmaceuticals (also known as
- Ciba-Geigy Corporation), a division of
Novartis, is the manufacturer of
- Ritalin. It is trying to expand the Ritalin
market to Europe and the rest
- of the world.
- Ritalin "works" by producing
malfunctions in the brain rather than by
- improving brain function. This is the
only way it works.
- Short-term, Ritalin suppresses creative,
spontaneous and autonomous
- activity in children, making them more
docile and obedient, and more
- willing to comply with rote, boring tasks,
such as classroom school work
- and homework.
- Short-term, Ritalin has no positive
effect on a child's psychology or on
- academic performance and achievement.
This is confirmed by innumerable
- studies and by many professional reviews
of the literature.
- Longer-term, beyond several weeks,
Ritalin has no positive effects on
- any aspect of a child's life.
- Labeling children with ADHD and treating
them with Ritalin can keep them
- out of the armed services, limit their
future career choices, and
- stigmatize them for life. It can ruin
their own self image, subtly
- demoralize them, and discourage them
from reaching their full potential.
- There is no solid evidence that ADHD
is a genuine disorder or disease of
- any kind.
- There is a great deal of research to
confirm that environmental problems
- cause ADHD-like symptoms.
- A very small number of children may
suffer ADHD-like symptoms because of
- physical disorders, such as lead poisoning,
drug intoxication, exhaustion,
- and head injury. Physical causes may
be more common among poor communities
- in the United States.
- There is no proof of any physical abnormalities
in the brains or bodies
- of children who are routinely labeled
ADHD. They do not have known
- biochemical imbalances or "crossed
- ADHD is a controversial diagnosis with
little or no scientific or medical
- basis. A parent, teacher, or doctor can
feel in good company when utterly
- dismissing the diagnosis and refusing
to apply it to children.
- Ciba spends millions of dollars to
sell parent groups and doctors on the
- idea of using Ritalin. Ciba helps to
support the parent group, CH.A.D.D.,
- and organized psychiatry.
- The U.S. Department of Education and
the National Institute of Mental
- Health (NIMH) push Ritalin as vigorously
as the manufacturer of the drug,
- often in even more glowing terms than
the drug company could get away with
- Our society has institutionalized drug
abuse among our children. Worse
- yet, we abuse our children with drugs
rather than making the effort to find
- better ways to meet their needs. In the
long run, we are giving our
- children a very bad lesson--that drugs
are the answer to emotional
- problems. We are encouraging a generation
of youngsters to grow up relying
- on psychiatric drugs rather than on themselves
and other human resources.
- The material in this summary is documented
with citations to scientific
- literature in Talking Back to Ritalin.
The book also describes non-drug
- approaches to helping children diagnosed
ADHD through identifying and
- meeting the basic needs of children,
and through improvements in school and
- family life.
- If you want to support efforts to stop
the psychiatric drugging of
- children, and to receive a newsletter,
we invite you to join the
- International Center for the Study of
Psychiatry and Psychology, 4628
- Chestnut Street, Bethesda, MD, 20814.
Visit our web site at www.breggin.com.
- Peter R. Breggin, M.D.
- 4628 Chestnut Street, Bethesda, Maryland
- If you have comments or suggestions,
write us snail mail, or
- e-mail us at <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org@tmn.com