ADHD and The Highly Sensitive Entrepreneur

ADHD has been touted as the entrepreneurs “superpower” in magazines like Psychology Today and yet what may be more true is that of highly creative, innovative, introverted and risk-taking individuals who didn’t fit into the mainstream had to make it on their own and rise above any shortcomings that held them back.

Those individuals labeled with the ADHD diagnosis has been on the rise for years with a 16% increase since 2007 according to an article in TIME magazine (see below.) Why are we seeing an epidemic of ADHD in children who are highly creative, innovative, imaginative? Could these be highly sensitive children whose highly reactive nervous system was not able to handle the injections of toxic vaccine ingredients like aluminum, mercury and formaldehyde since they were 2 months of age and have thus gone into some kind of overwhelmed shock?

Understanding the Rise in ADHD Diagnoses: 11% of U.S. Children Are Affected – TIME Magazine

By Alice Park @aliceparknyApril 02, 2013

“The rates of U.S. children affected by attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are skyrocketing, according to a recent report, but experts caution that the latest numbers require a bit of decoding.

That information shows that 11% of children ages 4 to 17 were diagnosed with ADHD, a 16% increase since 2007, the last time that researchers at Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) did a comprehensive survey for the prevalence of the neurobehavior disorder. The rise was especially dramatic among boys, with an estimated 1 in 5 boys in high school diagnosed with ADHD. What’s more, about two-thirds of the children diagnosed were treated with stimulant medications that can improve attention but also come with side effects.”

“While the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recently provided an updated guideline on the criteria for a proper ADHD diagnosis, including reports not only from parents but also from teachers and other day-care personnel about a child’s hyperactive, impulsive and inattentive behavior, not all physicians have the time to carefully collect and vet the input from these sources.

In addition, in order to properly identify a child affected by ADHD, Barbaresi, for example, conducts a medical and psychological assessment that takes several hours and requires the child and the parents to complete questionnaires about how the child responds to different situations, which factors seem to trigger hyperactive behavior or inattentiveness, as well as how disruptive these episodes are to the child’s daily activities. Unfortunately, most insurers do not reimburse for such evaluations, and that pushes already busy doctors to take the path of least resistance — prescribing medications such as Ritalin or Adderall. “That’s the big elephant in the room — pediatricians and the family practitioner are being asked to sort out a complex situation in an inadequate amount of time without access to data from psychological assessments they need to make these fine distinctions,” says Barbaresi. “So it’s a setup for inappropriate decisions to be made.”

And those include not just misdiagnosis and overmedication of children but mistreatment and even underdiagnosis in some situations. In rural and urban areas where mental-health services are scarcer and more stigmatized, rates of ADHD diagnoses are slightly lower than in affluent areas, and children in these areas are less likely to be treated properly. That could have implications for the long-term health of these children, since studies also show that about 60% of children with ADHD have a learning disability, and that 60% will go on to develop another mental illness by age 19. So a proper diagnosis of ADHD doesn’t just provide opportunities to treat behavior problems but potentially mental illnesses as well. That’s why “it’s clearly inappropriate to do these superficial assessments,” says Barbaresi.”