Viveca Novak's (2001) article, titled "New Ritalin Ad Blitz Makes Parents Jumpy: More Families and Legislators Are Revolting Against the Push to Consume Antihyperactivity Medications," depicted parents' struggle against the institutional and societal pressure to medicate their children who have been diagnosed with Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). This article highlighted American society's overdependence on prescribed drugs to deal with mental disorders. In this report, it is evident that both families and schools are highly susceptible to the media ads that tout ADHD drugs as the magical panacea that will eliminate the maladaptive behavior of the children with ADHD (p. 62).
As Novak (2001) reported in her article, the overemphasis of the biomedical approach at the expense of other methods needs to be reconsidered for many reasons. First, Ritalin and other types of prescribed drugs are psychotropic drugs that are highly addictive in nature. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) classifies these drugs within the same category as morphine and cocaine, which should be administered with caution (p. 62).
Second, by depending on the drugs, parents and education providers fail to realize that children with ADHD can improve via other strategies such as speech and language tutoring, or behavioral modification. Essentially, prescription drugs do not offer the sole solution for the diagnosis of ADHD. What is also significant, which is not stated in the article, is that the drugs may not be effective in helping some children with ADHD.
Most significantly, through their efforts to promote their drugs to the public, the drug makers have intruded into the doctor-patient sphere. In the case of ADHD, families and their doctors should be allowed to make the decision of using prescription drugs to treat their children with ADHD without external pressures from the drug makers and their schools (Novak, 2001, p...