It is well known that people with ADHD may be at risk for suicidal thoughts and behavior. But in the 1950s and 1960s children daydreamed and stared out the window during school, or barely sat still while their teacher droned on about subjects the child had no interest in. Were these people with ADHD? And did overly active or bored children ever think of committing suicide?
That is absurd, almost incredible. But today, the tragedy is real.
According to psychiatrists, nearly 5% of the global population belongs to a group of people with ADHD. In the USA, 75% of these have been prescribed Ritalin. The United States consumes 86% of all Ritalin produced. And Ritalin has been linked to suicide.
ADHD is a controversial subject, even amongst physicians. Does it really exist as a mental illness? And even if it does, should people with ADHD be prescribed a harsh class of psychiatric drugs?
Food dyes, sodium benzoate, and even video games have been linked to hyperactive behavior. Yet, rather than eliminate the cause, children as young as 4 have been prescribed a drug that has been known to cause suicidal thoughts, increased blood pressure, cancer and brain damage.
Ritalin is not the only offender. Focalin is another drug used to treat people with ADHD. Focalin is known to increase psychotic behavior, and like Ritalin, has been documented to create suicidal thoughts.
What are some of Focalin’s other side effects, particularly in children? Here is a partial list:
- Sudden death in children with heart problems
- Psychotic or manic symptoms, such as hallucinations, delusional thinking or mania in children or teens with no prior history of psychotic illness.
- Hostility and aggressive behavior
- Long term growth suppression
- Blurring of vision
- Stomach aches
Is there a single medical doctor raising the alarm?
Fortunately, yes. On January 30, an FDA advisory panel of pediatricians recommended changes on Focalin’s label, warning of its dangerous side effects. Since this drug is prescribed to 1.8 million children age 5 and up, this recommendation may help save lives.
One would hope that Norvartis, Focalin’s manufacturer, carries through on their promise to comply with the request to re-label the drug. They have at least agreed to investigate if actual evidence of suicidal thoughts is proven. Is this allowing the fox to guard the henhouse? Perhaps, but it may be a step in the right direction.
Fortunately, there are effective alternatives to psychiatric drugs. Studies done in Italy, The USA, Australia and the UK have all yielded similar results. Hyperactive children and adults given a regime of fish oil capsules have significantly improved behavior after less than a year.
This information is not suppressed. It can be easily found, even by the psychiatrists who insist that powerful antipsychotics are the only way to control hyperactivity.
More and more people are asking the question “Why must my child be treated with a potentially deadly drug, when there are effective and natural treatments for people with ADHD?”