There’s a man out there who’s trying to get your three-year-old hooked on hard-core drugs. He’s a guy you respect and look up to. He’s a guy you know and trust: someone who’s been in your children’s lives since they were born.
He’s a friend of the family: just looking out for you. And he’ll convince you he’s doing this for your kids: that they need these drugs for their own good. He may even set your kids up for free – at first. “Just a sample: it’s on the house. Give it a try – you’re gonna like it…”
And he’s got a big bag full of tricks: all kinds of pretty pills. Pretty pills that will help your kids: colorful candy that will improve your kids.
This bag of tricks can do almost anything for your children:
- Take kids who are hyper and calm ’em down.
- Help troubled children toe the line.
- Turn failing students into star scholars.
And chances are, you’ll fall for it. After all, why wouldn’t you? He’s even got a license to prove he knows what he’s doing.
He’ll tell you what these pills will do for your kids. But he won’t tell you what they’ll do to your kids. You might not be so sure that he’s got their best interests at heart then. Not when they start changing and getting sad… not when they get angry because they need their fix. Your once-happy, rambunctious kids are suddenly day-dreaming about suicide. Your once-healthy children are having heart palpitations and coronary complications.
They’ve left childhood behind and stepped through a door into a dark world. A world of addiction: a world of need. And that’s their world for the rest of their lives.
Think it can’t happen in your world? Think this ”family friend” would be exposed… run out of town? The media would warn you about him… the government would protect you from him. Think again. They know about him. They endorse him. They even gave him his license.
Because this pusher is your children’s doctor and the drugs he’s pushing are all legal.
Sound like a punch line to a bad joke? Sadly, it’s not: I’m deadly serious. The big pharmaceutical companies are pushing dangerous drugs to your kids, and they want get them before they can even say “no.” Don’t think that they would really dope up your beautiful baby? Sure they would: they have at least 4.8 billion reasons to do so.
What are these drugs that doctors can legally peddle to your kids? The most identified ones are amphetamines and methylphenidates: drugs that calm and focus the brain. You’ll know them by their brand names: Adderall, Ritalin and Strattera. These drugs help reduce excess energy and heighten attention. They’re prescribed to kids diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
So, if you have kids who are acting up at school, or are always ”on-the-go,” they may be diagnosed with ADHD. If they’re diagnosed with ADHD, a doctor may prescribe ADHD drugs. ADHD drugs don’t sound too dangerous. But these drugs can literally kill your child. ADDitude Magazine lists six common side effects of taking ADHD medications.
- Loss of appetite, weight loss
- Growth problems
- Trouble falling asleep
- Irritability, sadness, moodiness, or agitation within one to two hours after taking the drug
- Sadness, irritability, or worsening of ADHD symptoms as the drug wears off
Perhaps you consider these to be minor side effects. Your children may be happier and more focused. They might even score higher at school. Just don’t think too much about those symptoms worsening “as the drug wears off.” And don’t look too closely at the descriptions put out by Drugs.com. That language is pretty scary. A quick review of the generic versions of those drugs tells us that they may:
- Have a high potential for abuse
- Be habit forming
- Impair vision
- Cause serious heart problems
- Create blood-vessel problems
- Result in sudden death
Corporate Cover Up
If ADHD drugs can cause death, surely the newspapers would be all over that, right? Well, actually no, they wouldn’t be, as I’ll explain later. But the information is out there – you just have to know where to find it.
“ADHD drugs are linked to sudden death in children.” That’s what an American Journal of Psychiatry study found in June 2009. It revealed that ADHD stimulants posed a risk in children who previously had no underlying heart conditions.
"The association is… real," said study author Madelyn S. Gould, Ph.D. Gould is a professor of psychiatry and public health at Columbia University, in New York. "There probably does need to be more careful monitoring."
Gould studied medical records of 10 children who had all died from unexplained heart problems. In those 10 cases, the children were all taking methylphenidates.
The medical community was keen to bury the report. Dr. James Perrin, a professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital for Children, dismissed the study.
"The study adds very little to what we already know – that some children who receive stimulants experience sudden unexpected death," said Dr. Perrin. "The current study should not change the use of any medications or treatments."
The parents of the 10 children who died would probably disagree.
In April 2008, the American Heart Association (AHA) recommended that kids get an electrocardiogram (EKG) before taking ADHD drugs. EKG’s detect cardiac ailments that increase a child’s risk for sudden heart problems. The recommendation drew swift criticism from the medical community. The drug manufacturers remained silent, allowing doctors to speak for them. The AHA bowed to pressure and issued a revised recommendation a month later. The new recommendation? Kids did not need an EKG before starting ADHD drugs. An EKG was “reasonable, but not mandatory.”
In February 2006, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) voted to include black-box warnings on ADHD drugs. Black-box warnings are the government’s strongest safety alert.
The proposed warning referenced the risk of sudden unexplained death. A month later, the FDA advisory panel rejected the stringent black-box warning. Once again, just like the AHA, the FDA later revised their recommendation. Manufacturers were asked to add a warning label: the medications should not be used in children with structural heart problems.
There’s a clear pattern: a report is released showing that these drugs are dangerous. The report is dismissed. A governing health body advises extreme caution regarding these dangerous drugs… and then mysteriously revises the warning to cast a more favorable light on the drugs.
Why the Cover UP?
If ADHD drugs can result in sudden death, why would we possibly consider prescribing them to our kids? Well, that’s really the point of the cover up. The medical industry keeps the truth hidden so you don’t have the information you need to protect your kids.
At the beginning of the article I told you there were 4.8 billion reasons why the drug industry would be willing to dope your kids up for life. In 2008 U.S. sales of ADHD drugs totaled $4.8 billion. Those sales enjoyed a further 9.1 percent rise in 2009.
That’s big business for the pharmaceutical companies. So big that they made a $16 billion investment and gave drugs away for free! You heard that right: Pediatrics Journal reported that Big Pharma gave away $16 billion in free drug samples in 2004 alone. Over 10 percent of all U.S. kids taking prescription meds scored free drugs. And among those freebies were Adderall and Strattera.
Want to know who was hooking your kids up with freebies? Doctors were the primary pushers. The same friendly doctors who are diagnosing ADHD and prescribing related drugs.
Not convinced that ADHD drugs are over-prescribed? What would you say if I told you prescriptions for amphetamines rose 133 percent in five years? Prescriptions for methylphenidates rose by 52 percent. That’s from data collected by the American Association of Poison Control Centers.
But don’t take my word for it. There are real-life professionals willing to testify about the conspiracy.
Dr. Emmett Harrington has operated his own wellness practice for over 25 years in Winter Haven, Florida. He’s had first-hand experience of the system pressuring parents to medicate their children. Dr. Harrington was brave enough to tell THB the real truth. His own grandson was diagnosed with ADHD and he was powerless to intervene.
"My daughter was advised by her son’s teachers that if he wasn’t put on Ritalin he could no longer be allowed to attend their classes," said Dr. Harrington. "My daughter felt she had no choice but to comply even though she respects that her father (a clinical nutritional physician) offered a more natural solution."
So how are the pharmaceutical companies getting away with this? Because doctors are pushing the drugs for them. And if a doctor tells us it’s good for us, we believe them. It’s all "comes from the erroneous philosophy that an M.D. knows best," explained Dr. Harrington. "It’s been ingrained by the American Medical Association."
Doctors Pushing Drugs
A recent online Q&A between a “concerned” parent and an ADHD book-publishing doctor went something like this:
Parent: What’s the youngest age at which a child can be diagnosed with, and treated for, ADHD? My three-year-old is hyperactive and I worry about his safety.
Doctor: It’s unusual for a child to be diagnosed before the age of five. But since your son is showing signs of ADHD, there’s no need to wait. Have the doctor evaluate your three-year-old and ask about starting medication. The latest research shows that stimulants are now safe and effective – even for preschoolers.
That’s an actual online exchange between a doctor and a parent. The salient point: doctors hooking up three-year-olds with drugs.
A parent tells a doctor that their three-year old is hyperactive. This doctor considers that adequate evidence that the child has ADHD. That seems like quite a leap, and one the doctor was eager to make. Surely a sensible series of tests and procedures might reveal that the child doesn’t have ADHD? Perhaps there’s another solution available – other than drugs?
Surely drugs should not be the first response?
"Absolutely not," said Dr. Emmett Harrington. "Most medical doctors [do not] take the appropriate time to properly dig for the initiatory cause."
ADHD Drugs: Safe and Effective?
Our online doctor assures the parent that ADHD drugs are “safe and effective.” But how can that be when you read reports like this:
- According to Consumer Reports, all ADHD drugs may have long-term risks. Those risks include heart attack, stunted growth and sudden death. Not so “safe” then.
- Sami Timimi is a child psychiatry professor at England’s Lincoln University. She says there is no evidence that ADHD drugs ensure long-term success. Multiple U.S. studies agree: the brain-focusing-drug methylphenidate only works for a couple of years. Not so “effective” then either.
Overdoses, Suicide and Teen Abuse
The similarities between ADHD drugs and recognized hard-core drugs are impossible to ignore. They are behavior-altering, brain-changing and highly addictive. Here are three clear warnings about the most recognized brand-name ADHD drugs:
- Consumer Reports advises that children on Adderall need close monitoring. Why? To ensure the drug is not abused, given away to friends, or sold.
- Strattera is mood altering. It carries a warning that children who take it are at high risk for contemplating or committing suicide.
- A 2001 study found that Ritalin had a more potent effect on the brain than cocaine.
Reuters reported in 2009 that teen overdoses linked directly to ADHD drugs rose by 76 percent over eight years. This figure paralleled the 80 percent rise in ADHD drug prescriptions during the same period. The report was coordinated by Dr. Jennifer Setlik of the American Association of Poison Control Centers.
"Clearly, we are seeing a rising problem with the abuse of these medications," reported Dr. Setlik. "The findings suggest that more teens are abusing and misusing stimulant ADHD medications because they have access to those medications, not because a higher percentage of those treated have turned to abusing their medication."
That report is not an isolated one. The National Institute on Drug Abuse is also reviewing over 7 million methylphenidate-related abuse reports. The big concern? That the drugs are being abused to score artificial highs or to get better school grades.
Don’t think there’s a connection between methylphenidate and drug abuse. The same “medication” also popped up on a list of “Most Dangerous Drugs” in March 2007. The list was compiled by the U.K. Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs. They sandwiched the ADHD drug in between LSD and Anabolic Steroids. Nice company. So here’s a question for you: would you be happy giving your kids LSD or Anabolic Steroids? I don’t think so. But you still think ADHD drugs are okay?
“Safe and effective”? You must be joking… Have no doubt: this is big business. And the only one looking out for your child’s best interests is you.
In an upcoming Health Watch article, I’ll give you a few simple and all-natural alternatives that can help kids who’ve been diagnosed with ADHD. Look out for this article in the next few weeks.
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