The ADD/ADHD Controversy

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Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common childhood disorders. ADHD is a broad term, and the condition can vary from person to person. There are an estimated 6.4 million diagnosed children in the United States, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The condition is also known as attention deficit disorder (ADD), though this is considered an outdated term. The American Psychiatric Association released the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) in May 2013. The DSM-5 changed the criteria necessary to diagnose someone with ADHD.

Now after explaining what is ADD/ADHD we are ready to cover the controversy surrounding it. As this topic is vast and you may find a lot of different reasons to discredit this disorder and psychiatry in generally I would try to focus on the main and most prevalent discussions. Covering the criticism around the way of diagnosis, history, policies in the US and UK, the media and finally as a conclusion end this essay with my final humble opinion on the matter and hopefully have helped you to reach a decision.

Diagnosis and History

One of the most controversial parts of ADD/ADHD is how it is diagnosed, for one and as stated earlier there is no physical tests to confirm you have the disorder. Secondly, there is no established single cause and the existing method of assessment is not standardized meaning one psychiatrist may use a written test while others may depend on what parents and teachers say, and what one psychiatrist classify as ADHD another may not. Thirdly there are other problems, which can cause behavioral concerns such as dyslexia, hearing problems, family problems, depression and anxiety (Rutherfor...

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...ut of control, destructive, spiteful and unsociable.

List of references:

1. Kinman, T. (2012). ADHD and ADD: Differences, Types, Symptoms, and Severity. Healthline. Retrieved on December 3, 2013, from

2. Martin, B. (2007). Causes of Attention Deficit Disorder (ADHD). Psych Central. Retrieved on December 3, 2013, from

3. Quinn, P. (2012). Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: What Is ADHD?. WebMD. Retrieved on December 3, 2013, from

4. Rutherford, D. (2010). Why is ADHD controversial? NetDoctor. Retrieved on December 3, 2013, from
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