Would You Give Your Kid Adderall?

Even if he/she wasn't diagnosed with ADHD? According to a new article in the NY Times, there's a growing population of both doctors and parents who are allowing children to take Adderall, even though they don't have ADHD.

An excerpt of the article reads:

"When Dr. Michael Anderson hears about his low-income patients struggling in elementary school, he usually gives them a taste of some powerful medicine: Adderall.

The pills boost focus and impulse control in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Although A.D.H.D is the diagnosis Dr. Anderson makes, he calls the disorder "made up" and "an excuse" to prescribe the pills to treat what he considers the children's true ill - poor academic performance in inadequate schools." Read the full article here.

The story goes on to describe a scary, yet growing trend: doctors prescribing drugs like Adderall not because kids have ADHD, but because it makes them perform better in bad schools.

As a parent, the idea of prescribing a strong prescription drug to a young child is already terrifying. Add to that the fact that my child might not actually need said drug, but that it's only being prescribed to make up for what the school lacks and I'm appalled.

The doctor quoted in the story admits that he thinks ADHD is made up and the parents of the child taking Adderall concede the child doesn't have ADHD. Yet, both the parent and the doctor continue to allow the child to take Adderall because he behaves better when he's on it. Yikes!

For me, the decision is easy. I would never allow my child to take Adderall unless it was absolutely medically necessary. What about you, though? Even if both you and your doctor agreed your child didn't have ADHD, would you let your kid take Adderall??