View Full Version : The fact is. that ADD, ADHD, OCD, Aspergers, Autism and Social Anxiety are 'one'!


movingshadow
10-05-09, 07:03 AM
So we can talk Aspergers and ADD and Social Anxiety but in case it hasn't really been said yet - keep this in mind when ever you read about or discuss if someone has any of those.

Everyone with this one condition may have more ADD symptoms than Asperger symptoms. Or they might have more Autism symptoms than OCD symptoms. So hence they are diagnosed with ADD or ADHD then maybe later they develop more social anxiety so they have a reversed diagnosis.

Everyone with any of those listed conditions has only been given a snapshot. We all have a different symptom of the one condition that affect us in life more than the other.

I think this is why a lot of people have the theory that these traits are part of human evolution.

Anyway, I had to clear this up for everyone who hasn't realized it yet - that when you come on this forum and you have all the different threads.
Autism, Aspergers, OCD, Bipolar - the list goes on. I think we all have all of those conditions to some degree.

sarek
10-05-09, 08:42 AM
I have to admit this is an interesting perspective and I have thought along these lines too. The 'family' may be even more extended to include some types of personality disorders as well.

Yet perhaps it would be instructive if any kind of supporting evidence for this could be found.

movingshadow
10-05-09, 05:47 PM
Well I think the evidence is clear - the issue is that it is just not listed under one single name for everything if society is going to call it a 'disorder'.

Crazygirl79
10-05-09, 07:01 PM
You're basically saying that every human being has traits of the mentioned conditions and that is true eg: I see ADD traits in mother all the time but she doesn't have ADD (although I do wonder sometimes..I've always had that feeling that she's "different" but that's beside the point) and you've raised a good point here.

Selena

FrazzleDazzle
10-05-09, 07:44 PM
This theory might explain why we could all go to 10 different evaluations and come out with 10 different diagnoses. Of course, it would also depend on which countries those 10 diagnostitians wew in too .....

Crazygirl79
10-05-09, 07:58 PM
Good point Frazzle, the fact that many people are given a multiple diagnosis is much more common that what people think and it's because people suffer many traits of these conditions, however traits are not an issue it's only when symptoms are strong, there's a lot of them and they somehow interfere with so called normal functioning only then would you qualify for a diagnosis and only then would society consider you as being someone with a "disorder"

For example I was diagnosed with "Autistic Tendencies" meaning I only had traits but not enough for a full diagnosis but I was diagnosed with full blown ADHD and you also raise an excellent point in regards to how professional diagnose along with what country they're from/trained in etc.

Sarek: I think you've made an great point in stating that the"family" could be extended to include personality disorders and I think it should extend further and include conditions such as Tourette Syndrome and the like as well.

Selena

Dizfriz
10-05-09, 08:01 PM
quote=movingshadow;793090].
Anyway, I had to clear this up for everyone who hasn't realized it yet - that when you come on this forum and you have all the different threads.
Autism, Aspergers, OCD, Bipolar - the list goes on. I think we all have all of those conditions to some degree.[/quote]

Interesting post. Over the years, I have given some thought to this.

There is no question that each of us have, at times, experienced many if not most of the symptoms listed in the DSM. Almost all of the DSM categories describe behaviors and feelings that are part of the human condition. It is when these traits become extreme to the degree that it interferes in one's life that it can become a disorder. We gather clusters of traits and assign labels to them (diagnosis). We do this when these symptoms become extreme, more than roughly 93% of those experiencing them (The 93% figure is chosen for statistical purposes).

A good example is Depression. We all feel sad sometimes but when the sadness becomes extreme to the degree that it is disrupting lives, we begin to think of it in terms of being a disorder and possibly start treatment. Since depression is present in many disorders, learning why this is true may be quite important.

We assign differential diagnosis for several reasons, among them are:

It helps communication. When I talk about ADHD with a clinician, then we can be assured we are reasonably close to being on the same page so we can have effective communication.

It helps treatment. ADHD, Autistic spectrum, Anxiety, Depression, Bipolar all have characteristics in common and a person can show evidence of all of these but the treatments can be quite difference.

It drives research. Exploring the various diagnosis is the basis of a lot of ongoing research, confirming or changing diagnosis; establishing causes, and finding reliable and effective treatments just for a few.

We also know that many of these disorders may be connected but we do not know just how yet. Look at the comorbidity rates in ADHD children. Bipolar and ADHD, for example, have many symptoms in common. Is it because Bipolar also causes ADHD symptoms but is not related to ADHD, is it because these are different manifestations of the same basic disorder, or is it that both of these have some genes and brain functions in common but not all? Questions for which we will hopefully have better answers in the future. I suspect the commonality of various disorders may prove to an important factor in the research.

At this time, we do not really yet know nearly as much as we need to to really help those suffering from the various disorders. This is why discussions such as these are important.

So to your post, Yes, I feel that as a part of our humanity, we all experience most of the behaviors and feelings described in the DSM. I really do not see any issue with this and I have run into few who would disagree with the premise.

To my thoughts, I feel that in the future, we may well find why many of these are connected and those connections will prove to be very important. I very much suspect that that neurobiology developed from researchers asking the some of the same questions you present will give us a working basis for giving those who suffer from the different disorders some better help.

Interesting subject isn't it?

Dizfriz

*KJ*
10-06-09, 05:26 PM
I think personality factors into it all too.

For example, we can all be stubborn at times. We can all be very focused at times too. So what happens when someone that is perhaps more stubborn than average also has ADHD...do they then get an ODD diag to go along with it? What happens when that stubbornness is combined with good focus, do we call it tenatious or OCD? Depends on what the other diag is there, huh?

Snapshot is a good term...because if there is one thing I've learned, my son's disposition changes...like all of ours, some weeks he's great and others I wonder how I still have a strand of hair left. But I'm sure my husband could say the same about me...I have another excuse though, I'm a girl, LOL!

But seriously, my (and most women's) hormonal fluctuations may have a greater affect on mood than typical men experience...but who's to say that my son isn't just more sensative to it?

There is definatley a lot of gray! Which I think is why we are constantly pondering the true essence of all these things. There are infact a lot of moving parts!

I haven't thought much about other disorders...but I absolutely think ADHD and ASDs have way more in common than convention tends to suggest.

I also think that what helps one helps the other...certainly things like ABA do little to help, it might 'train' but it does little to develop...treating an ADHDer in the same fashion has the same results...frustration!

Being flexible and moving WITH them, has a MUCH better result, as with RDI & floortime...it might be called something different for ADHD, but the approach is the same...more 1X1, direct, interaction...bonding and offering a secure environment. I actually think it's kinda comical and kinda sad in a way, that ABA is the only supported behavioral therapy for ASDs, but change that diag to ADHD, and suddenly the therapies are more in line with these others...same kid, just different acronym. It's not at all that the EFFECTIVE treatments are different, it's the studied & approved treatments are different.

odsybmx734
10-06-09, 07:09 PM
right on man, im diggin this.

Archon
10-06-09, 07:54 PM
Well I think the evidence is clear
You and I must use very different definitions of the word evidence :)

odsybmx734
10-06-09, 10:26 PM
eh, its just evidence enough for me, because it makes SENSE. what doesnt make sense to me is tons of people having 'disorders' i really hate when people truly look at these things as disorders because the only thing they hurt is life within society. if you look at humans in their natural habitat maybe these 'disorders' would become advantages?

mildadhd
10-06-09, 11:52 PM
Moving Shadow
Your post #1, made me think,
'Love would never leave us alone"
"Out of the darkness, there must come out the light"
-BOB MARLEY

FunnyHead

*KJ*
10-07-09, 09:37 AM
Yeah, I gotta agree on one hand about the incidence of disorders...have you seen the latest announcement about ASDs being 1 in 100, and 1 in 67 for boys?

Then factor in that ADHD isn't part of that spectrum, that's up to, what? 20%?

Then you've got this skyrocketing bipolar incidence, don't know the exact figures, but am aware it's becoming more frequent.

Then, there are all the other LDs...

What does that leave us with, a flip of a coin for NT or not?

Either there is something F'd up going on with humanity, or there is something F'd up going on with the psychology community. Correct me if I'm wrong, but really see only those 2 scenarios.

Anyone want to suggest the likely scenario and back it up with something?

blueroo
10-09-09, 02:01 AM
eh, its just evidence enough for me, because it makes SENSE. what doesnt make sense to me is tons of people having 'disorders' i really hate when people truly look at these things as disorders because the only thing they hurt is life within society. if you look at humans in their natural habitat maybe these 'disorders' would become advantages?

You know what else makes "sense"?

The earth is the center of the universe.
The sun revolves around the earth.
Evil spirits cause sickness.
The earth is flat.
Men can't fly.
People aren't smart enough to govern themselves.
Strangers are more dangerous than people you know.
and on and on and on...

When we refuse to look beyond our "gut" for answers, our world is limited by our excruciatingly small imaginations. That is why we developed the scientific method. So we can seek answers that are beyond our ability to "guess".

Yes, it can make "sense" to lump all of these disorders together. It can feel nice to take an infinitely complex problem and turn it into an answer so simple that even a child could understand it. But it's not true. These disorders are not the same thing. We have loads of scientific evidence to show us that. Sorry to rain on your parade.

Dizfriz
10-09-09, 09:52 AM
This is something I have found to be useful to keep in mind.

Simple answers to complex questions are almost always wrong answers.

Dizfriz

Lady Lark
10-09-09, 11:18 AM
Yeah, I gotta agree on one hand about the incidence of disorders...have you seen the latest announcement about ASDs being 1 in 100, and 1 in 67 for boys?

Then factor in that ADHD isn't part of that spectrum, that's up to, what? 20%?

Then you've got this skyrocketing bipolar incidence, don't know the exact figures, but am aware it's becoming more frequent.

Then, there are all the other LDs...

What does that leave us with, a flip of a coin for NT or not?

Either there is something F'd up going on with humanity, or there is something F'd up going on with the psychology community. Correct me if I'm wrong, but really see only those 2 scenarios.

Anyone want to suggest the likely scenario and back it up with something?

As "new" disorders are discovered, validated, and accepted as being "real" you will find more and more people being diagnosed with it. It's not that AS is new, it's not that it wasn't around until recently, but rather that doctors are getting a better understanding of what it is, and who has it.

I'm not saying that there aren't environmental factors at play here, there very well could be. The fact is we don't know.

Sounds a lot better to me then some giant drug company conspiracy, or further evidence of the decline of humanity. ;)

Dizfriz
10-09-09, 12:24 PM
Originally Posted by Lady Lark in response to a good post by KJ.
As "new" disorders are discovered, validated, and accepted as being "real" you will find more and more people being diagnosed with it. It's not that AS is new, it's not that it wasn't around until recently, but rather that doctors are getting a better understanding of what it is, and who has it.

I'm not saying that there aren't environmental factors at play here, there very well could be. The fact is we don't know.

Sounds a lot better to me then some giant drug company conspiracy, or further evidence of the decline of humanity. ;)KJ you raise some real questions that many are asking. This is to reinforce the points made by Lady Lark.

It wasn't too long ago that few outside the groups that worked with Autism were even aware that it was better seen as a spectrum disorder. Few had any knowledge of the more subtle aspects of Asperger's or of PDD. The ability of the medical, psychological and educational communities to pick up on anything other than severe Autism was very limited and to a good extent, it is still is.

We are however becoming better at picking up on this and as we get better we are able to identify more kids as being in the spectrum and get them help.

Most are not aware how difficult it is to correctly diagnose Autistic Spectrum children especially if the clinician has not been exposed to many. The milder levels can mimic a lot of other disorders making identification confusing and difficult. I know, it has confused me more than once.

As Lady Lark said, this does not preclude at least in part the increase being due to environmental issues. This is being actively explored. We do not at this time know if these are causative. At this point we, to the best of my knowledge, cannot firmly identify any that are. This may change with time. That is just the nature of science and these kinds of disorders.

We often see increases in identification and treatment of disorders due to better awareness. Although we have a ways to go, we have seen this phenomenon with the better awareness and treatment of ADHD.

The educational community is, for the most part, the front line for this. It is they who so often put out the alert to the possibility of a problem and recommend evaluation.

So to reinforce, I really do not see any nefarious implications with these issues but instead, just our slow, often bumbling attempts to deal with these complex disorders.

Dizfriz

*KJ*
10-13-09, 10:59 AM
I understand the process, and the evolution. I can even accept that a portion, how much of it I don't know, is due to better criteria and all.

But I can't accept that it's all a matter of being able to label a kid better these days. We just didn't see these types of things in kids to this degree when I was a kid...we just didn't.

Half (or close to it) the kids in my sons class have issues, he is in a mainstream class...let's not forget about the inclusion class, and the special ed class too...

It has definately gone up.

Are we over-diagnosing or is there else something going on?

Archon
10-13-09, 11:11 AM
But I can't accept that it's all a matter of being able to label a kid better these days. We just didn't see these types of things in kids to this degree when I was a kid...we just didn't.

Yeah, back then they were given shorter labels like "lazy", "stupid" and "bad"

Are we over-diagnosing or is there else something going on?

I'm not convinced that it has to be one of those explanations personally. I can't speak for what goes on at your school but as a guy who flew under the radar for 21 torturous years all I can say is that it sucks to slip between the cracks :)

*KJ*
10-13-09, 11:26 AM
I'm not looking for a fight here.

And certainly I can see that some of the kids I remember, the clowns, the bullies, the trouble-makers...sure probably could have been helped better.

My brother was one of those 'lazy' kids...does he have ADHD (undiagnosed) perhaps...he has HORRIBLE self-esteem...but I also can attest for some not so great parenting that could explain a lot...the youngest, and the least cared for within a house riddled with SA....

During school he was a constant problem for my parents, and for me, as teachers had NO clue what to do with him, had NO ONE else like him, and frequently called on me to shed some light, for which I had none...he drove me insane too...

I hear what you are saying...

I'm not at all saying that we shouldn't be properly diagnosing these kids...

And I'm not at all saying that we are not properly diagnosing them now...

I'm saying I don't get it...

I'm saying that I just don't remember that many kids having this many issues...and bare in mind I wasn't privoy to their files...I'm basing it off of my memory and my understanding. It just didn't seem to be this prevelant.

Do I think things are statistically more prevelant today, in part due to better criteria...absolutely. Do I think it explians the entire increase...not at all. Is part of it over-diagnosis...perhaps. Would that explain the remaining portion...I honestly doubt it comes anywhere close.

So where is the rest coming from?

neon600
10-13-09, 11:31 AM
I dont know if anyone else would agree, but I do understand what your really asking here. My personal opinion is overprocessed foods, preservatives, dyes, toxins in general, as well as environmental reasons, not just the home type either. Mother Earth is dying from the inside out, and we are the victims.

Archon
10-13-09, 11:35 AM
I'm not looking for a fight here.
Sorry if I sounded like I was picking a fight, that wasn't my intention.

I'm saying I don't get it...

I'm saying that my I just don't remember that many kids having this many issues...and bare in mind I wasn't privoy to their files...I'm basing it off of my memory and my understanding. It jsut didn't seem to be this prevelant.

The world is a different place now, so out of everything that's changed it's hard to say what's relevant, I'm not going to speculate that's for sure.

What I will say is that it's only over-diagnosis if we're missing the mark, so it could be that we're not over-diagnosing. That said, it's unlikely that it doesn't happen, I'm just wondering if over-diagnosis seems more prevalent than it is.

It could very likely (extremely likely) that there are some clinicians out there who are operating with old/wrong information and criteria, creating false negatives and false positives.

It's certainly a good question that I don't think anyone has an answer to (or at least one that's good).

*KJ*
10-13-09, 12:49 PM
I don't think it makes a lot of sense talking about the diagnostic practices of clinicians...particularly those that may be operating on poor or out-dated information. Or even those that might be a bit quick with the prescription pad. I'd like to believe those 2 cases are not very common...at least I hope so anyway. Statistically speaking there should be the same number of errors in the opposite direction to balance it all out anyway...

Do you think the changes in society are partly to blame?

I do realize too, that no one here has the answers to this question...I'm just assuming it's run through others minds, and what they've come up with...just a discussion is all...

Dizfriz
10-13-09, 12:56 PM
I understand the process, and the evolution. I can even accept that a portion, how much of it I don't know, is due to better criteria and all.

But I can't accept that it's all a matter of being able to label a kid better these days. We just didn't see these types of things in kids to this degree when I was a kid...we just didn't.

Half (or close to it) the kids in my sons class have issues, he is in a mainstream class...let's not forget about the inclusion class, and the special ed class too...

It has definitely gone up. Are we over-diagnosing or is there else something going on?


Good questions on an interesting subject. Let me try with some thoughts with focus on ASD:

Is there an increase in diagnosis?
Yes, the number of ASD diagnosis are really increasing. I do not think there is much question on this.


Some possible factors to consider:

I often stress that experience in a particular disorder helps in awareness, identification and treatment. This I strongly suggest is something to look for in choosing a clinician.

From my experience with ASD as an example, I had read on the subject but until I actually worked with this, all I had was academic knowledge. I worked to get better at this and, would you believe, after reading a Newsweek article on Autism, I correctly identified an ASD kid. After that it was much easier to spot them. I still missed some of the more tricky cases but I knew that once I identified a kid as possible ASD I needed to refer to someone better equipped to diagnose ASD. I was able to help a fair number of ASD children this way and became reasonably good at treating the milder cases.

This is more or less the process many professionals to through. As experience is gained the clinician becomes better at recognizing the disorder and thus better able to help the kid get needed help. Teachers and school counselors (our front line) go through a similar process. With more awareness comes more correct identification of kids with this disorder.

Is it overdiagnosed?
I do think we are probably not overdiagnosing. In the case of ADHD as an example, the statistics clearly show it is underdiagnosed and undertreated. I suspect many childhood disorders including ASD would show similar stats.

Is there really an increase in the true incident rate?
No answer yet on this. As more become better aware of what to look for through training and experience, more cases are recognized. One problem is that until children are correctly diagnosed, they cannot be added to the statistics. It makes it very difficult to determine if an increase in the number of children diagnosed is due to a real increase in the incidence rate or is it the result of better identification or some combination of both. It is really tough to get good insight on what is really happening.


One of the issues that may be involved was touched on by Archon. Kids with problems have always been there, we just didn't have good names for what was happening. It was true the half century or so ago when I was in public school and it was true when my kids were going to school and it is true now. Now, we have more names to place on them and much better ways of helping. Keep in mind that diagnosis drives treatment; no label, no help. It may not be the best way but it is the way it is.

In the past, we did put labels (diagnose?) on these kids but not ones that helped. 'Yeah, back then they were given shorter labels like '"lazy", "stupid" and "bad"'(Archon) and then failed and dropped out. My Jr high had a 50% drop out rate. 50-60 years ago there was little help. You either did well or you struggled on your own. Not much inbetween.

So the real question involves whether or not the "true" incident rates are going up. If they are actually going up then it is serious cause for alarm. If it is the result of better identification then this is good thing.

I wish I had an answer to this at least it is being looked into by researchers much better qualified than myself. Hopefully we can get some feedback soon.

Rambling on as usual.

Dizfriz

NoReally
10-14-09, 11:00 PM
And certainly I can see that some of the kids I remember, the clowns, the bullies, the trouble-makers...sure probably could have been helped better.

I think you're missing quite a few. I am thinking of my brother who would probably fit an Asperger's diagnosis today, but that wasn't an option 30 years ago. I think he could have really benefited from having someone understand what was going on, who could have given him some guidance that was suited to him. But 30 years ago, he was just the "weird" kid who was the victim of the bullies and trouble makers.

How many other people flew under the radar in the past? And just took the hits for things that were out of their control?

I think what's happening is that we are starting to realize the biological basis of behaviors that in the past were labeled bad, lazy, stupid, weird, etc. I am not surprised at all that it turns out that a large minority of the population has trouble that can be found in their biology. People do have reasons for the things they do. If modern diagnosis and treatment of the underlying problems can actually help people, then it's an improvement over thousands of years of moralizing.

RedHairedWitch
10-15-09, 03:23 AM
When a member of the family was diagnosed Aspergers my Dad said "Back in the day you just said 'Billy-Bob is better with cars than people'"

Neurodiversity rocks!

blueroo
10-27-09, 02:56 PM
Let's not forget the unsavory truth about children. Children used to die. Children used to die a lot. Before birth. At birth. In the cradle. Of horrible childhood diseases and, sometimes, at the hands of mothers who couldn't cope. Children now survive at rates unprecedented in all of history, and we've eliminated what was a potent filter.

But I can't accept that it's all a matter of being able to label a kid better these days. We just didn't see these types of things in kids to this degree when I was a kid...we just didn't.

Yes, you did. But you were a naive child. What you don't realize is that it was once relatively normal to hide "broken" children. They were a shame, a burden, and a secret. We once had a great many institutions where people were sent away. There were no IEPs or protected rights to education. There was no school for a non-functioning autistic child. Angry and destructive boys spent their time in homes and boot camps. It wasn't uncommon for slow or stupid children to drop out of school as early as the 3rd or 4th or 5th grade and begin working jobs.

The first thing to remember when analyzing the past is that you can't remember. You especially can't remember that which you didn't know and were protected from. If you want to know what happened a long time ago, the first thing you need to do is stop trusting what you think you recall because chances are it's biased at best and flat out wrong at worst.

*KJ*
10-27-09, 03:08 PM
Perhaps you are right.

And that is REALLY sad too!

I remember there were a few in my classes, pretty much each year, that today I can say that they were likely ADHD or ASD or AS or some other LD.

And there was 1 class in our school where the SN kids stayed. From memory (I know) they were largely Downs, CP, and MR.

Not at all what we "see" today...my son has just been mainstreamed so spent 3 years in an integrated class where 50% were LD (of some type). Even in his mainstreamed class more than 50% of the kids are on IEPs.

It's really frightening and sad to think that the frequency was that high 35 years ago, but that these kids were 'hidden'...or unsupported :(

ginniebean
10-27-09, 06:19 PM
The educational community is, for the most part, the front line for this. It is they who so often put out the alert to the possibility of a problem and recommend evaluation.

Dizfriz

I really can't say if this is relevant but it is possible that people see educatators as diagnosing when they are just raising an alert which may or may not have merit.


Not all educators are particularly suited to work with children and it's always possible that some have less tolerance for impulsive behaviour which would lead to excessive alerts. (just a speculation not a clue if this is so or not)


I'm saying that I just don't remember that many kids having this many issues...and bare in mind I wasn't privoy to their files...I'm basing it off of my memory and my understanding. It just didn't seem to be this prevelant.


Do I think things are statistically more prevelant today, in part due to better criteria...absolutely. Do I think it explians the entire increase...not at all. Is part of it over-diagnosis...perhaps. Would that explain the remaining portion...I honestly doubt it comes anywhere close.


So where is the rest coming from?


I actually see this a lot, the question is a reasonable one. If there are so many people with ADHD now, where were they? Why didn't we see them. There's a lot of things we didn't used to see. We didn't see spousal or child abuse, we didn't see sexual abuse ....we do now, and we don't generally question the stats. We still don't see these people, occaisionally you'll hear stuff, but it's not ever present in our face despite alarming statistics. It was hidden out of shame, and it still is. Unless of course you were living the nightmare)


The same can be said of kids with ADHD. There is a great shame in being different, we know this because difference is targeted by kids in school. We learned early that you hid it and 'acted normal' as best you could. People with invisible disabilities learn to mask the disabling nature of their condition. When I was diagnosed in the 60's my parents were told it's something you grow out of and they saw no reason to give medication for a temporary problem.


It wasn't talked about, I doubt it was ever raised with my teachers. People were left to come to their own conclusions. I definitely was called stupid, lazy.. and crazy. I remember being so frustrated because I knew something was wrong, but there was no one who could hear that.


What's interesting tho is that we still don't see the bruises, the broken bones, the crushed spirits of abuse survivors, unless we know them personally, yet we don't doubt that humans are guilty of these crimes.


We do doubt that people are innocent and it may be that a lot of the resistance towards ANY kind of LD is a fear of letting the guilty off the hook. We hear on a regular basis that those people just want "special treatment" and there is still such great fear of even mentioning you have adhd to an employer even tho your efficiency could easily increase given a few accomodations.


The fear of other people knowing and making these kinds of judgements is high because people can see behaviour but they can't see intent or motive. That is left to the individual estimation. In this sense my guess is even tho I don't say I have ADHD people are probably highly suspicious when they work with me because I have difficulty hiding my hyperactivity and other symptoms. Inattentives are much more difficult for people to spot so they may risk more skepticism should they mention it which creates its own frustrations. Either way none of us are getting 'off the hook' easily.



When a member of the family was diagnosed Aspergers my Dad said "Back in the day you just said 'Billy-Bob is better with cars than people'"

Neurodiversity rocks!

There's certainly a lot of merit in this too. Our culture demands a greater degree of conformity, more emphasis on personal appearance and professional mannerisms. It seems reasonable to conclude that an increase in comformity would equate to a decreased tolerance of idiosyncrasy.

However, I wouldn't say that back in the day they had any interest in appreciating idiosyncrasy but unless the behaviour was extreme there were no such things as going for therapy or to a psychiatrist. So, that just ended up more of a tolerance by default as the prevailing wisdom was "well it's not like his family didn't try and teach him... but.. what the hell you gonna do.. just the way he is" followed by a bemused shake of the head.

Dizfriz
10-28-09, 09:15 AM
ginniebean


Posted by Dizfriz: The educational community is, for the most part, the front line for this. It is they who so often put out the alert to the possibility of a problem and recommend evaluation.

Response by ginniebean: I really can't say if this is relevant but it is possible that people see educatators as diagnosing when they are just raising an alert which may or may not have merit. Some parents do see it this way and ignore the recommendations of the schools. Some are simply in denial and others often work off serious misunderstandings about the nature of ADHD.

Sometimes it takes a lot of work by the school to convince the parents to get an evaluation. It is an ongoing struggle and the only answer I can think of is to work on better educating the public on the nature of ADHD.

Often you see strong signs of relief by the parents when they are given accurate information on the nature of the disorder. Once they can see it as understandable, they can see it as manageable.

Dizfriz

NoReally
10-28-09, 02:37 PM
We do doubt that people are innocent and it may be that a lot of the resistance towards ANY kind of LD is a fear of letting the guilty off the hook.

Bingo! I think that's a large part of it.

Nevermind the practical reality that helping people identify and work through their problems is more constructive and beneficial to society than just blaming them. Blame is more satisfying. Blame is more self-gratifying ("so-and-so is lazy, but since I'm so successful it must be because I work harder and deserve it more.")

Archon
10-28-09, 03:32 PM
Bingo! I think that's a large part of it.

Nevermind the practical reality that helping people identify and work through their problems is more constructive and beneficial to society than just blaming them. Blame is more satisfying. Blame is more self-gratifying ("so-and-so is lazy, but since I'm so successful it must be because I work harder and deserve it more.")
It's exactly the same with drug policy. We know that severely punishing drug users does not help them in any way shape or form, but it helps satisfy the vindictive urges of some of the pious, which is what the punishment is really all about :P

Kunga Dorji
12-27-09, 05:10 AM
Yeah, I gotta agree on one hand about the incidence of disorders...have you seen the latest announcement about ASDs being 1 in 100, and 1 in 67 for boys?

Then factor in that ADHD isn't part of that spectrum, that's up to, what? 20%?

Then you've got this skyrocketing bipolar incidence, don't know the exact figures, but am aware it's becoming more frequent.

Then, there are all the other LDs...

What does that leave us with, a flip of a coin for NT or not?

Either there is something F'd up going on with humanity, or there is something F'd up going on with the psychology community. Correct me if I'm wrong, but really see only those 2 scenarios.

Anyone want to suggest the likely scenario and back it up with something?

I think all of these disorders have in common the thread of individuals whose individuality and creativity are stifled by the requirement to fit in with the demands of conventional society. If you think about it the life that we are forced to live due to crowding, and current employment opportunities has nothing to do with the kind of lives we lived as hunter gatherers. To make it worse the pressures of modern life are intensifying, and even the nucalear family is threatened by ever increasing demands ta=haat we work harder and harder. Life is very much out of balance. It is no surprise that the cracks are starting to show. Rates of mental distress are worst in the most distressed societies.

Kunga Dorji
12-27-09, 05:15 AM
Bingo! I think that's a large part of it.

Nevermind the practical reality that helping people identify and work through their problems is more constructive and beneficial to society than just blaming them. Blame is more satisfying. Blame is more self-gratifying ("so-and-so is lazy, but since I'm so successful it must be because I work harder and deserve it more.")



At the "Mind and its Potential" conference in Sydney a month ago there was a talk by a dyslexic guy. His comments about feeling belittled by the "normals" sounded just like the way we feel, or the way the autistics feel when talking about their experiences with the neurotypicals. This judgmental attitude is the real problem. Lets face it- in whose interest is it to be dysfunctional? It certainly does not suit me. The "blame the victim" mob are the problem. Not us.

Archon
12-28-09, 12:45 AM
If you didn't have the first hand experience of being in the outgroup, can you say with absolute certainty that you wouldn't go through the same process as the NT's?

Resist the self serving bias when you answer :P

Kunga Dorji
12-29-09, 07:08 AM
If you didn't have the first hand experience of being in the outgroup, can you say with absolute certainty that you wouldn't go through the same process as the NT's?

Resist the self serving bias when you answer :P

Archon- what troubles me most is that I did do exactly that- and it is a behaviour that the profession that I represent absolutely wallows in. As for how I should answer or not answer- that is up to me. Nobody ever gets the opportunity to silence me again - ever.

I am well aware of many of my failings- but the more I "fess up" to them the less power they have over me. If you find any more- your kind attention in pointing them out to me will be appreciated (This is 100% serious- not some clever pose. I am sick of hiding my failings and pretending to be better than I am. In the end- no matter how hard I try to pretend that they do not exist- they always bite me when I least expect it.)

I might add here that I had the enlightening experience of a 30 year reunion for my old high school. it amazed me to see the number of people who were apologising to people for bullying issues that had happened 40 years ago. As for the guy who apologised to me- i had forgotten all about it- I'm sure he was just sucked into a bigger group because he was vulnerable himself and needed the approval of the bigger group. I know that I did the same thing t times- so I can't talk. I cant even remember who I did it to- but I know I did it.

ginniebean
12-29-09, 07:57 AM
At the "Mind and its Potential" conference in Sydney a month ago there was a talk by a dyslexic guy. His comments about feeling belittled by the "normals" sounded just like the way we feel, or the way the autistics feel when talking about their experiences with the neurotypicals. This judgmental attitude is the real problem. Lets face it- in whose interest is it to be dysfunctional? It certainly does not suit me. The "blame the victim" mob are the problem. Not us.

Kinda wierd when people see a disability as a form of privelage that needs to be stopped by negating it.

Kunga Dorji
12-30-09, 04:08 AM
Kinda wierd when people see a disability as a form of privelage that needs to be stopped by negating it.

It is a weird weird world. I think I need serious therapy.:eek:

daveddd
01-01-10, 12:59 PM
http://apt.rcpsych.org/cgi/content/full/7/4/310

Lunacie
01-01-10, 02:32 PM
So we can talk Aspergers and ADD and Social Anxiety but in case it hasn't really been said yet - keep this in mind when ever you read about or discuss if someone has any of those.

Everyone with this one condition may have more ADD symptoms than Asperger symptoms. Or they might have more Autism symptoms than OCD symptoms. So hence they are diagnosed with ADD or ADHD then maybe later they develop more social anxiety so they have a reversed diagnosis.

Everyone with any of those listed conditions has only been given a snapshot. We all have a different symptom of the one condition that affect us in life more than the other.

I think this is why a lot of people have the theory that these traits are part of human evolution.

Anyway, I had to clear this up for everyone who hasn't realized it yet - that when you come on this forum and you have all the different threads.
Autism, Aspergers, OCD, Bipolar - the list goes on. I think we all have all of those conditions to some degree.

I too have wondered at the basic connection between all these neurological disorders. And I do think there is one. But that doesn't mean they are all different ways of presenting the same issue.

I think it may be somewhat like viruses. All viruses are similar in a basic kind of way, but they are all different as well, and some of the same treatments are helpful with all viruses.

Drat - got interrupted by daughter asking a question and my train went clear off the track. Hope someone can tell where it was headed...?

Crazygirl79
01-02-10, 05:55 AM
Blueroo and others, movingshadow is mentioning similar stuff to what can be found in the book 'Tourette Syndrome and Human Behavior' by David E. Comings, he is a qualified medical doctor and specialist in Tourette Syndrome, if you were to take time to actually read the book you will what movinshadow is saying actually has substance. Dr Comings mentions how the differences and similarities between the disorders which is along the same lines is what movingshadow has mentioned, another thing I'll mention is that particular book also includes a lengthy chapter dedicated to Autism Spectrum Disorders, so yes in a way the evidence is at least there if not clearly that these disorders are holding hands with one another so to speak.

Kunga Dorji
01-03-10, 12:57 AM
I too have wondered at the basic connection between all these neurological disorders. And I do think there is one. But that doesn't mean they are all different ways of presenting the same issue.

I think it may be somewhat like viruses. All viruses are similar in a basic kind of way, but they are all different as well, and some of the same treatments are helpful with all viruses.

Drat - got interrupted by daughter asking a question and my train went clear off the track. Hope someone can tell where it was headed...?

Now we do risk running right off topic here... but.... your assertion that we are talking about neurological disorders is just that- an assertion. There remains a very good chance that it will be disproven- and that if it is we may be at risk of losing access to stimulant medication as there is a rush to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

This is a tricky area- because thoughts do have a biological substrate- so it is expected that certain pathways and areas of brain activation will predominate in a given mental state. The tricky issue is cause and effect.

There is also the possibliity ( well you all know I think probability) that what we are talking about is neurodiversity- and the disorder is in the society that fails to recognise that.

Now DSM itself is a collection of symptom clusters. It acknowledges the limitations of the disease model but states "they couldn't think of a better word"- than mental illness. While there are little pieces of evidence here and there - that suggest some possibility of neurological differences, the idea of a neurological disorder is a long way from proven. We must also consider that that model suits academics who like labs and test tubes, and certainly suits the manufacturers of medications ( who are doing their best to persuade us of the virtue of their newer, more expensive, less tested,on patent medications).

I think it is not reasonable to slip an assertion like that in the middle of a thread. It only leaves the choices of let it pass- or stray off topic.

Lunacie
01-03-10, 09:21 AM
Now we do risk running right off topic here... but.... your assertion that we are talking about neurological disorders is just that- an assertion. There remains a very good chance that it will be disproven- and that if it is we may be at risk of losing access to stimulant medication as there is a rush to throw the baby out with the bathwater.

This is a tricky area- because thoughts do have a biological substrate- so it is expected that certain pathways and areas of brain activation will predominate in a given mental state. The tricky issue is cause and effect.

There is also the possibliity ( well you all know I think probability) that what we are talking about is neurodiversity- and the disorder is in the society that fails to recognise that.

Now DSM itself is a collection of symptom clusters. It acknowledges the limitations of the disease model but states "they couldn't think of a better word"- than mental illness. While there are little pieces of evidence here and there - that suggest some possibility of neurological differences, the idea of a neurological disorder is a long way from proven. We must also consider that that model suits academics who like labs and test tubes, and certainly suits the manufacturers of medications ( who are doing their best to persuade us of the virtue of their newer, more expensive, less tested,on patent medications).

I think it is not reasonable to slip an assertion like that in the middle of a thread. It only leaves the choices of let it pass- or stray off topic.

At this time ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorders are considered neurological disorders by the medical community. I don't see the point in debating that in the middle of this thread.

EYEFORGOT
01-03-10, 01:06 PM
Originally posted by movingshadow:


So we can talk Aspergers and ADD and Social Anxiety but in case it hasn't really been said yet - keep this in mind when ever you read about or discuss if someone has any of those.

Everyone with this one condition may have more ADD symptoms than Asperger symptoms. Or they might have more Autism symptoms than OCD symptoms. So hence they are diagnosed with ADD or ADHD then maybe later they develop more social anxiety so they have a reversed diagnosis.

Everyone with any of those listed conditions has only been given a snapshot. We all have a different symptom of the one condition that affect us in life more than the other.

I think this is why a lot of people have the theory that these traits are part of human evolution.

Anyway, I had to clear this up for everyone who hasn't realized it yet - that when you come on this forum and you have all the different threads.
Autism, Aspergers, OCD, Bipolar - the list goes on. I think we all have all of those conditions to some degree.
<!-- / message --><!-- sig -->

I hope this helps if you need to re-gather your thoughts.

Kunga Dorji
01-04-10, 08:02 AM
At this time ADHD and Autism Spectrum Disorders are considered neurological disorders by the medical community. I don't see the point in debating that in the middle of this thread.

Actually there are parts of the medical community that are vehemently opposed to the idea. I cannot fault their logic.

Dizfriz
01-04-10, 10:32 AM
Actually there are parts of the medical community that are vehemently opposed to the idea. I cannot fault their logic.
Sounds like something that would be interesting to look into. Could you point me to some information on this?

Dizfriz

Lunacie
01-04-10, 10:34 AM
Sounds like something that would be interesting to look into. Could you point me to some information on this?

Dizfriz

That's what I was going to ask as well. It's not a perspective I'm familiar with.

Lunacie
01-04-10, 10:46 AM
Okay, let me qualify that. I've wondered myself if at least some of the cases of Autism Spectrum Disorders are caused by environmental factors, or possibly exacerbated by such factors. But I haven't seen any research to suggest that ADHD may be influenced in the same way.

I just did a Google for "debate over ADHD being neurologically based" and all I found was this link: {www.zurinstitute.com/adhd_clinicalupdate}: which I quote in part...


On the other side of the debate the claim is that ADHD is a made up diagnosis, nothing more than poor behavior resulting from a lack of discipline and structure. Proponents of this theory believe that disengaged parents become lazy and come to accept inappropriate behavior in their children. They jump at the diagnostic label and pharmaceutical interventions because little is required on the part of the parents. ADHD, according to this view, is a condition invented by the pharmaceutical companies to increase drug sales and corporate dollars. Proponents of this theory also assert that the pharmaceutical interventions cause most of the symptoms associated with ADHD and generally do more harm than good.


... which seems very puzzling to me. Within the same family, same parenting skills and everything, how can one child have ADHD and another child have Autism or Asperger's, and yet another child be considered neuro-typical? Wouldn't they all show many of the same symptoms or traits?

Some people have tried to blame all these problems on "bad parenting" yet they wouldn't dream of blaming parents for giving their children diabetes by providing a poor diet.

Unless you can provide better "logic" than I was able to find, I most certainly can and do fault their logic.

blueroo
01-04-10, 01:14 PM
Actually there are parts of the medical community that are vehemently opposed to the idea. I cannot fault their logic.

Science does not "vehemently oppose" anything. Only people with opinions do. Either something is supported by the best available evidence, or it is not. Sometimes there is vagueness, but this is not one of those cases. In this case, decades of science show that ADHD and Autism are both real neurological disorders. The only hold-outs are fringe doctors with lacking credentials and/or suspicious motives. So seriously, let's not begin debating that in the middle of this thread.

Archon
01-04-10, 01:34 PM
On the other side of the debate the claim is that ADHD is a made up diagnosis, nothing more than poor behavior resulting from a lack of discipline and structure. Proponents of this theory are idiots who don't have a clue what they're talking about.

Fixed.

Kunga Dorji
01-05-10, 07:43 AM
Okay, let me qualify that. I've wondered myself if at least some of the cases of Autism Spectrum Disorders are caused by environmental factors, or possibly exacerbated by such factors. But I haven't seen any research to suggest that ADHD may be influenced in the same way.

I just did a Google for "debate over ADHD being neurologically based" and all I found was this link: {www.zurinstitute.com/adhd_clinicalupdate}: which I quote in part...



... which seems very puzzling to me. Within the same family, same parenting skills and everything, how can one child have ADHD and another child have Autism or Asperger's, and yet another child be considered neuro-typical? Wouldn't they all show many of the same symptoms or traits?

Some people have tried to blame all these problems on "bad parenting" yet they wouldn't dream of blaming parents for giving their children diabetes by providing a poor diet.

Unless you can provide better "logic" than I was able to find, I most certainly can and do fault their logic.

Lunacie-
I will hunt up the specific link i was thinking of but
1) DSM specifies that it discusses symptom clusters- not diseases- and that is the basis of our classification system
2) Any thoughtful psychiatrist I have spoken to acknowledges that there are likely to be multiple pathways to any of the described "states" listed in DSM
3) The scientists pushing the neurobiological model hardest do not adequately distinguish cause from effect, nor do they consider the significance of neuroplasticity. I was reading recently of a Buddhist meditator who went his way without supervision and decided that his goal was to stop thinking. He succeeded- and ended up in a hospital receiving parenteral feeding as he had reduced himself to a vegetative state.
4) The people most against using the diagnosis, and most against using stimulants, are exploiting our inattentiveness to this fundamental logical flaw in the common conception of ADHD as a neurobiological disorder, and pushing the anti medication argument sucessfully as they are out reasoning those arguing the case for us.

Believe me_ I fitted the diagnosis perfectly at the start of treatment. My mindfulness practice is deepening day by day and medication becomes less and less necessary. I am finding more and more valuable material on the neuroplasticity front- and I am happy that using some medication gives me the strength to research after a full days work. I am happy not to have to make it a "one or the other choice"- as I am sure that one of the causes of my lapsing from mere disorganisation into full blown ADHD was the split mindedness induced by not knowing where I spiritually wanted to be.

Kunga Dorji
01-05-10, 08:00 AM
Some links:

http://www.academyanalyticarts.org/galvesealker.htm
http://www.simonsobo.com/

Both of these sources provide good detail of the flaws in the neurobiological arguments.
I agree with their analyses on these points- but do not agree that stimulants are inappropriate.

I will chase up a few more links later.

Lunacie
01-05-10, 09:48 AM
Some links:

http://www.academyanalyticarts.org/galvesealker.htm
http://www.simonsobo.com/

Both of these sources provide good detail of the flaws in the neurobiological arguments.
I agree with their analyses on these points- but do not agree that stimulants are inappropriate.

I will chase up a few more links later.

None of the criteria presented in the first article concerning parenting skills and attitudes fits my daughter and son-in-law, and yet their first child was judged by the family doctor to have the worst case of ADHD he had ever seen.

Archon
01-05-10, 09:49 AM
With all due respect Barliman, those sources you cited are severely lacking.

One claims that twin studies are useless because any longitudinal research involving human beings is quasi-experimental and that, ipso facto, there is no reason to think that ADHD has a genetic component. This is the part where I was tempted to stop reading.

However, even if we accept the unlikely claim that ADHD is non-biological, what does this mean? Is ADHD suddenly not a big deal? Do we suddenly stop providing treatments? Should this in itself be any reason to change how we treat people?

The answer is no.

Dizfriz
01-05-10, 11:37 AM
With all due respect Barliman, those sources you cited are severely lacking.

One claims that twin studies are useless because any longitudinal research involving human beings is quasi-experimental and that, ipso facto, there is no reason to think that ADHD has a genetic component. This is the part where I was tempted to stop reading.

There were several places in the "Debunking the Science" article that set me back a bit. For example (In addition to the one referenced by Archon) there was this one that frankly surprised me.

Deutsch et al. (1982) found that adopted children are much more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than non-adopted children. This is understandable in view of the fact that all adopted children have suffered the trauma of being ripped away from their birth mothers.It is well known that adopted and foster care children have a greater chance to be diagnosed with both ADHD and Bipolar than kids not from these settings. Much of this can be explained by the simple fact that very often the reason that the children are in foster care or have been put up for adoption is that the parents and family were not, for whatever reason, able to adequately care for their children. That many of the parents were themselves ADHD or Bipolar is a much more likely answer. I have seen this situation happen a number of times.

Why children in foster and adoptive care are more likely to be ADHD could be an interesting area of discussion but the statement that

This is understandable in view of the fact that all adopted children have suffered the trauma of being ripped away from their birth mothers.stopped me in my tracks. This is way too simplistic.

This would indicate for that even a newborn child suffered enough trauma from being "ripped" from their birth mother to cause them to be later diagnosed as ADHD. The term "all" makes this very hard to swallow.

Some or most experiencing separation trauma I would accept as I have seen this trauma happen far too many times with foster care children but "all" I have major problems with and the idea that this causes ADHD does not take into account the many foster care and adoptive children who are not diagnosed as ADHD or Bipolar and it does not take into account the many foster care children who have been diagnosed as ADHD or Bipolar before being placed in foster care. In other words, I do not think they can back up their statement.

There were a number of other points of concern in the article but these two were enough for me to lose much of my interest.

I have no truck with those who say that that ADHD is an neurological disorder only with no reference to the environment. I really do not hear many proposing this viewpoint. Maybe because I do not agree with them is partially why.

The viewpoint that it is a strictly a matter of bad parenting, improper school structure and such mirrors the battles we have had with the Scientologists. This is their view and fortunately, this has been discredited for the most part.

Just to make clear, my thoughts is that ADHD is the combination of neurological characteristics in contact with the environment. The characteristics of ADHD are a disorder in some settings, in some settings neutral, and in some possibly an advantage. It is unfortunate that we do not get to chose our family setting nor for the most part, our environment or society so we have to approach the problem taking into account the environment in which the individual has to operate and go from there.

Again, I do not think we are really all that far apart in our views but simply coming at from a different approach.

In my opinion the view you are reporting has some valid points especially in reference to the DSM as it is currently written but they have a very long way to go to make their case. They seem to be quite a ways outside the mainstream which is ok but it also means that they have need of some very strong evidence. Until then, time and research will tell.

Thanks for posting the references. I was mostly unaware of this movement in psychology. Interesting.

Dizfriz

Dizfriz
01-05-10, 12:08 PM
There is also the possibliity ( well you all know I think probability) that what we are talking about is neurodiversity- and the disorder is in the society that fails to recognise that.

I am interested in your approach to the neurodiversity model. My questions are:

1. How does it effect treatment? For example a third grader who cannot sit still in class and cannot get their work done at home (While I may well agree to problems in the education model, it is what has to be dealt with in the present). If we cannot change the schools, how can we help this child now? How do we help improve peer relations? How can the model improve parental work with the child beyond the current behavioral management model?

2. How does it effect research? How can we scientifically examine into the model to gain understanding, make usable predictions, and improve outcomes for those with the diagnosis.

To be effective, it has to do a better job than the neurological deficit/environmental interface model we have now.

If neurodiversity is a philosophical model then I think it might be quite useful especially for adults. I used variation of this that stated there is nothing broken, nothing wrong with ADHD kids (heritable type). What they have is simply a variation of the normal human condition. Then we went on from there to figure out how to help the child.

As always interesting discussions.

Dizfriz

Lunacie
01-05-10, 03:30 PM
I had a headache yesterday which made it difficult for me to think clearly and remember what I read and wanted to respond to. I also noticed the notion that adopted kids are more likely than non-adopted kids to be diagnosed with ADHD and I was thinking pretty much what Dizfriz responded with - that parenting a child with ADHD or Autism is hard enough but if the parent has ADHD or Asperger's themselves, especially if they haven't been diagnosed yet or gotten any treatment, it's going to be very hard for them to deal with the normal issues of parenting, and reeeeelly hard for them to deal with a more difficult child.

Therefore they may be more likely to throw up their hands and ask someone else to deal with it instead. They are also more impulsive and risk-taking and may find themselves pregnant when they aren't in a position to become a good parent and may be more likely to give the baby up for adoption. So. like Dizfriz, I foung the "explanation" of poor parenting to be much to simplistic. There are many layers to all of this and just glancing at the surface may provide a flawed answer.

Kunga Dorji
01-06-10, 02:43 AM
I am interested in your approach to the neurodiversity model. My questions are:

1. How does it effect treatment? For example a third grader who cannot sit still in class and cannot get their work done at home (While I may well agree to problems in the education model, it is what has to be dealt with in the present). If we cannot change the schools, how can we help this child now? How do we help improve peer relations? How can the model improve parental work with the child beyond the current behavioral management model?

2. How does it effect research? How can we scientifically examine into the model to gain understanding, make usable predictions, and improve outcomes for those with the diagnosis.

To be effective, it has to do a better job than the neurological deficit/environmental interface model we have now.

If neurodiversity is a philosophical model then I think it might be quite useful especially for adults. I used variation of this that stated there is nothing broken, nothing wrong with ADHD kids (heritable type). What they have is simply a variation of the normal human condition. Then we went on from there to figure out how to help the child.

As always interesting discussions.

Dizfriz

Point 1 is the killer. I have seen a large number of complete failures of standard treatments- people who have been on a range of long term stimulant and behavioural treatments and essentially got worse. One comment from the wife of a friend of mine about her son: "At least he has not got in trouble with the police .....yet". That is only the tip of the iceberg. So for starters we do not have to do much to be better than current treatments.


Treating children will always be harder because they have the least control over their environment. What I personally found the hardest thing to grasp was the ways in which my own behaviour was making my daughter much worse. My own behaviour was invisible to me- and it has taken a great deal of hard personal work to change my own self knowledge to the point where the household is not dominated by my issues. I knew there must have been something I was doing that was worsening the sitution- but did not even know how to frame the questions when dealing with professionals. Furthermore at the time I did not realise that my personal example was not providing my daughter with the model of consistent, organised behaviour that she needed to be able to model. One can be well attached to ones parents - but if they are disorganised one is not going to learn the lesson of organisation.

We know that stimulants are valuable - and we do not need a neurobiological model to justify their use. I have many conversations with parents who are not even willing to entertain the diagnostic label at all because they see it as disempowering. As far as i am concerned that attitude prevents their children from getting access to what I consider the most effective treatment- stimulants.

( Remember though that I am arguing that the desired effect is the increased focus and learning capacity that enables the ADHD sufferer to learn organised behaviour, and to start down the road of mastering the skill of attention.)

Kunga Dorji
01-06-10, 02:48 AM
I had a headache yesterday which made it difficult for me to think clearly and remember what I read and wanted to respond to. I also noticed the notion that adopted kids are more likely than non-adopted kids to be diagnosed with ADHD and I was thinking pretty much what Dizfriz responded with - that parenting a child with ADHD or Autism is hard enough but if the parent has ADHD or Asperger's themselves, especially if they haven't been diagnosed yet or gotten any treatment, it's going to be very hard for them to deal with the normal issues of parenting, and reeeeelly hard for them to deal with a more difficult child.

Therefore they may be more likely to throw up their hands and ask someone else to deal with it instead. They are also more impulsive and risk-taking and may find themselves pregnant when they aren't in a position to become a good parent and may be more likely to give the baby up for adoption. So. like Dizfriz, I foung the "explanation" of poor parenting to be much to simplistic. There are many layers to all of this and just glancing at the surface may provide a flawed answer.

Another issue is the argument that exposure to stress in the intrauterine environment may alter the number of receptors for stress hormones, and prime a child for affective disorders of all kinds. A pregnancy that ends in adoption is likely to be more stressful than one that occurs in more ideal circumstances. Again- this argument is not settled. It is a very deep and multilayered issue, and the proponents of the current model have done nothing more than assert that cause and effect runs one way.

Kunga Dorji
01-08-10, 09:24 AM
I guess I should say that I feel the current stress on neurobiological causation actually misses the point that Russell Barkely made in the "International Consensus Statement on ADHD" where he emphasised a biopsychosocial causation. I do agree that there are genetic differebces- just not that those differences lead inevitably towards dysfunction.

Lunacie
01-08-10, 10:55 AM
I guess I should say that I feel the current stress on neurobiological causation actually misses the point that Russell Barkely made in the "International Consensus Statement on ADHD" where he emphasised a biopsychosocial causation. I do agree that there are genetic differebces- just not that those differences lead inevitably towards dysfunction.

I know some feel that it's the stresses of modern society that make these genetic differences into a dysfunction or a disorder. However, as someone who was in school 40-50 years ago, before doctors were diagnosing ADHD, before pharmaceutical companies were researching and concoting treatments - kids with ADHD still had a heck of a time coping. We were called lazy or stupid. We were told we were very smart but weren't meeting our potential.

So what would it look like if we went back 100 years instead of 50? Or 200 years? We'd have to go back at least that far to find a society where being able to read and write wasn't the norm, where schools were for the priviledged. Where we didn't need to learn how to work a calculator, a computer, a car ... where things were simpler.

Fact is, things are getting more complicated all the time. So we're developing new ways to cope. Instead of memorizing 5-digit telephone numbers, we have cell phones and organizers that remember 10-digit phone numbers for us. This frees up our brains to handle other things, but we still live in a more regimented society. And that may be where the ADHDer has the most trouble. Although it is helpful for those with Asperger's to have that kind of routine and structure.

We can't change the world back to what it once was. So we have to find ways for people with different brains and different chemistry to cope with life. Not everyone who starts taking meds has to continue them for life. For some, meds gives them the ability to develop skills for coping, and eventually the skills are enough.

But I'm still calling "hogwash" on the idea that poor parenting is causing these issues. That was disproven long ago.

*KJ*
01-08-10, 11:21 AM
I'm having a hard time with the whole 'genetic' thing here...it seems that having a genetic code means that they are 'wired' one way versus another (functionally or non, I guess).

But in other realms, having a genetic code means being 'predesposed'...

I don't get the difference, I might need a specifc degree to get it, that could be the problem.

I DO understand that there are genetic conditions that mean without a doubt a person will have an 'error'...

But my understanding (admittedly perhaps incorrect) is that the genes found to be consistent with ADHDers meant that they were 'predesposed'...like in the case of certain cancers. Doesn't mean that the person WILL develop it, just means the trigger is THAT much easier to set off. So doesn't that beg the question, what the heck is setting it off? And doesn't it also beg the question whether it's possible to set that trigger in someone that does NOT have the genetic code (like perhaps in the case of an autoimmune disorder or something else that can easily cause symptoms that look a LOT like ADHD)?

I DO think it has much to do with stress! ESPECIALLY since young children exposed to stress seem to have a MUCH greater incidence.

A good example is all those poor children abandoned in those Baltic homes way back....was it in the 70's. For those of you who have no clue what I'm talking about, these kids literally lives in overcrowded places void of any love & affection. THAT caused MAJOR developmental, psychological and learning disabilities.

And I am in NO way suggesting that it's the parents fault, merely using an example to highligh how significantly stress can effect a child.

But stress comes in LOADS of forms doesn't it. There are physical, emotional and pychological stresses.

As far as meds go, and I absolutely am NOT arguing, this is an honest to god question...one that I am having a hard time grappling with...

Dealing with life and all it's complexities (regardless of whether our generation is more complex than past or not, it's what our reality is, so it's all that really matters) isn't half the battle learning how to manage the stress, pressure, and emotion that surrounds it???? Whether it be, if I don't kill this buffalo the whole family doesn't eat and I will let my parents down, OR if I don't ace this calculus test I'll flunk out of college and never get a good job, or if I don't take care of my laundry I'll have nothing to wear to work tomorrow but dirty clothes and my co-workers will be offended...

So if that's true, how the heck do meds help. If they only manage to aid in getting the chore accomplished by keeping thoughts organized, how the heck does anyone ever learn to manage the stress & pressure (which seems is at least partially responsible for the distractions going on in the mind.)?


And how we got to this point from the original question about how ADD, ADHD, Anxiety, and ASDs may be related/similar/same is beyond me!? Not to say that this isn't interesting, just that I found the original discussion, well more original. Seems somehow all conversatins go back to the whole hunter/gatherer notion or the big question about whether ADHD is real or not.

Archon
01-08-10, 11:30 AM
biopsychosocial causation

I would bet money that social factors play a very limited role in the primary disorder (although the impact has in terms of anxiety and substance issues is undeniable).

If there is a substantial psychological component then you would expect things like CBT to work, but it doesn't.

Biology is by no means the only relevant factor, but it sure seems to account for the core of the issues.

*KJ*
01-08-10, 12:14 PM
Neurology, genetics & biology are all very different things, are they not?

Dizfriz
01-08-10, 12:52 PM
. I do agree that there are genetic differebces- just not that those differences lead inevitably towards dysfunction.

I think that few would disagree with this.

Dizfriz

Dizfriz
01-08-10, 01:57 PM
KJ
You ask interesting questions. Let me try to help a little.

This is based on the way I see ADHD. Others of good will may disagree so take it for what it is.

We are all born with different sets of abilities (in the case of ADHD, executive functions-the ability to self regulate). These are mostly genetically determined. You can call them predispositions if you wish, it is not a bad term but the big thing is that they are pretty much "hard wired" in that, at least as far as we know, you cannot change the basic abilities by education or will. (To be clear, you can change the expression of the deficits)

Now these abilities express themselves in different ways depending on the environment the person lives in:social, physical and such.

Say a person has a limited ability to translate written letters into words. This will have no impact on a person living in a preliterate society. It can have a huge impact on someone living in our western culture with its stress on literacy. In otherwords, the aspect of "disability" is in relation to the environment and culture. The aspect of "deficit" is one that can, for the most part, be empirically tested by comparing the individual with the rest of the peer group and does not change a lot throughout the life span and as such could be termed as hardwired.

Another example could be two ADHD children with identical deficits. One whose parents are mostly calm, use good behavior management methods, understand ADHD and works well with the schools and another whose parents yell, nag, and hit as the preferred way of controlling the child, has little to do with the schools and have incidents of parents being arrested in the home.

I suspect there will be a huge difference in how ADHD will be expressed with these children and which will have the greater level of disability.

What I am seeing more of lately is the idea that at least some of the causes of ADHD are the interaction between the genetics and the environment. For example, it appears that the combination of ADHD genetics and smoking or drinking gives a greater chance of the child being diagnosed as ADHD than any of these alone. As Barliman likes to point out, just having the genetics for ADHD does not mean the child will be ADHD. The combination idea is fairly new and looks like an exciting area of research.

Now, we know that trauma, severe anxiety and related stressors can have a lot of impact on the developing brain, but as far as I know the is little evidence that it can cause ADHD. If you are interested in this subject check out the work of Bruce Perry.

Now having said that, the stressors mentioned can have a *lot* of impact of how the already existing deficits of ADHD are expressed, what kind of impact do they have on a person's life. This is where I feel a lot of the confusion comes in.

KL, I know that this does not address all of your questions but is the best I can do in the time I have available (I write slowly). I hope this helps at least a little. If you need more, post and I will respond as best I can.

Dizfriz

*KJ*
01-08-10, 02:47 PM
I guess things keep going back to my experience and the perspective I have gained from my single observation.

I have real trouble with the idea that meds are the best course of 'treatment'...and I DO recognize that everything falls back on research and that research shows that this is the most successful course to take. I get that!!!!!!!

** note: I am not saying this in a judgemental way!!!!!!!

I also get that it's about the only thing that has been looked at!

Now, it may be so that the 'tendency' for ADHD is genetic, or truamatic or even both...it doesn't really matter. We know that people that have had serious brain injuries have been able to 'rehabilitate' ... I can't help wonder why this is not the same for ADHD. I do know it's not an injury, per se...but as much as we understand it, it's a disfunction, as much as a disfunction may result from an injury.

Even moreso when I review our history. See my child was born with a 33% underdeveloped mind (and body too). Since just after he learned to coordinate sucking & breathing successfully, and therefore be allowed to leave the hospital, I have been coached to 'rehabilitate' him...or to aid in his development.

Yes, at this present moment he does infact meet the criteria for ADHD. 2 years ago he met the criteria for PDD (incidently many of these criteria are similar to ADHD). Since he has overcome many (but not all), he is left with ADHD.

But now after his diag changed, now suddenly all that we have been doing (all that was successful to 'rehabilitate' him) is no longer considered the best approach. Instead it's meds.

It just doesn't jive in my head!

Now, consider the whole genetics of it all...yup! I've got a few in my family (maybe even myself) that have similarities that may be consistent with ADHD, perhaps even AS...but I also have a daughter who is 100% nt and you wouldn't believe how similar in PERSONALITY she is to DS.

It feels a lot like splitting hairs to me!

We joke in this house that stubborn Irish meets stubborn Pollack and it combines to make an exponentionally stubborn child. So what's the difference between exponentially stubborn and ODD? And also tell me how that same stubborn tendency was celebrated in the NICU and throughout his young childhood as being the single force getting him over his hurdles, but now suddenly since he is expected to sit in a chair all day it's no longer a good thing? The kid wants to run & find the next challenge to hurdle, not sit and listen to a teacher tell him how to form a correct lower case e and how it should be positioned on his paper!

My daugher is a lot like him, she doesn't want a single person to tell her a thing, or do it for her! She'll be 3 in 3 weeks and she has learned more from him than anyone else! He is an AMAZING big brother with the patience of Jobe when it comes to her...the rest of the world will just have to wait on his terms though.

I cannot help, with my mothers 'eye', but to think, ya know, perhaps they, and everyone else is precisely designed. And it doesn't necessarily mean that 'oh the world is moving faster than our gene pool can keep up with'...just that, hey I'd love to have been an astronaught, but my specific genes just didn't make that possible. So, I became a statistician instead....and then a mom. Big deal! We all have our place, we all have our strengths we all have our weaknesses...my mom is an avid reader (my absolute least favorite activity), she is an amazing artist (I can't match colors to save my life!)...my sister sunburns easy as does my dad, I don't. My brother can't hold down a job, I can't sit still without getting too ansy....all these things play into WHO we are.

So some of us may have a gene that if met with enough outside force will turn on...when turned on, some will become sociopaths, some suicidal, some warriors, some motivational speakers, some cancer survivors, some victims, some philosophers, writers, inventors, on & on...

A friend on mine has just learned the hard way that she has some pretty serious genetic risks for cancer...should she accept the fact that she has only 10 years before she's got to start planning her funeral?

So why then do we perceive that having "ADHD genes" has that sort of a 'sentence'?

The whole thing is very confusing to me...yes some confusion I believe may be due to my lack of understanding for ALL the details...but I will say most of it is in a pure contradiction to all that I have experienced with my one & only 'observation'!

I do think that there is a relationship between ASDs & ADHD, very much so. I do think that there is a gene that may make some more predesponsed, but I have to wonder if my son has that gene, perhaps he does and his early 'trauma' turned it on, or perhaps he doesn't have it, and having THAT much early truama can 'mimick' the same condition.

What doe sit matter though? He has a lot of love and talent! He may want to be an astronaught someday too, but I bet he would be an absolutely sucessful engineer instead. As long as he's happy I don't care if he wants to be a circus clown!

Kunga Dorji
01-08-10, 05:19 PM
I know some feel that it's the stresses of modern society that make these genetic differences into a dysfunction or a disorder. However, as someone who was in school 40-50 years ago, before doctors were diagnosing ADHD, before pharmaceutical companies were researching and concoting treatments - kids with ADHD still had a heck of a time coping. We were called lazy or stupid. We were told we were very smart but weren't meeting our potential.

So what would it look like if we went back 100 years instead of 50? Or 200 years? We'd have to go back at least that far to find a society where being able to read and write wasn't the norm, where schools were for the priviledged. Where we didn't need to learn how to work a calculator, a computer, a car ... where things were simpler.

Fact is, things are getting more complicated all the time. So we're developing new ways to cope. Instead of memorizing 5-digit telephone numbers, we have cell phones and organizers that remember 10-digit phone numbers for us. This frees up our brains to handle other things, but we still live in a more regimented society. And that may be where the ADHDer has the most trouble. Although it is helpful for those with Asperger's to have that kind of routine and structure.

We can't change the world back to what it once was. So we have to find ways for people with different brains and different chemistry to cope with life. Not everyone who starts taking meds has to continue them for life. For some, meds gives them the ability to develop skills for coping, and eventually the skills are enough.

But I'm still calling "hogwash" on the idea that poor parenting is causing these issues. That was disproven long ago.

The fact is that the rate of all mental illnesses in Japan and Scandanavia is 1/3 of that in the US, UK, Australia, and New Zealand.
The factor that the latter 4 have in common is marked inequality of income distribution compared to the first two.
Inequality of income distribution is an excellent measure of social stress.

As to the relationship between parenting and ADHD- are you saying that there is no relationship between the two?
What I am saying is that the ADHD vulnerable group is genetically different- with a difference that should be an advantage- if conditions are met for the differences in that person's makeup to be developed rather than frustrated in the course of his or her development.
Put it this way:
Genetic difference:
A child with high sensitivity, a brain that matures 3 years later and a strong tendancy to a visuospatial learning pattern, and often a strong preference for tactile- kinesthetic learning styles. Such a child is highly sensitive to criticism and is likely to react to any unkindly framed criticism
by putting up the emotional barriers and becoming oppositional.

We then couple that with a school system which is overloaded, favours harsh disciplinary measures, and is quite unable to respond to the 20% of children who are substantially different in learning needs from the majority. The school system also is designed to create winners and losers- to maintain a supply of people for menial jobs. Most teachers I know are highly dedicated individuals- but they arejust overloaded. Every year some vote hungry politician comes up with the idea that what the electorate wants is less taxation- which also means less services- so the situation gets worse.

Finally - for the vast majority of us parents - life is much harder than it was for the previous generation of parents. We are mostly 2 income families now- and usually both parents come home from work simply too exhausted to give struggling, gifted children the individual attention needed to save them from the disaster they are headed for.

Incidentally- I would like to see the information that you have that documents that there is no relationship between parenting and expression of mental distress. All I have seen so far is assertions- from Russell Barkely down.

I might add that there is now pretty clear evidence that rate of all kinds of "mental illness" ( including ADHD) is escalating in the West at an alarming rate. Another spin off of the "trickle down" effect that Reagan and Thatcher promised us.

Dizfriz
01-08-10, 05:23 PM
KJ

You are trying to understand what has and is happening to your child and yes you are confused about many of the details but really that is ok. Not all work on the same basis.

What I do see in your love for your child and your iron determination to help him. This is what is important. Understanding the details is useful but not necessary to help your son. The love and determination is. This is were you seem to be strongest and that is where you will have the greatest impact.

Keep on plugging. One of the best medical and therapeutic tools is a parent determined to help their child and unwilling to leave any stone undisturbed to find that help. You fit this description well.

Dizfriz

Kunga Dorji
01-08-10, 05:34 PM
This response adresses a number of the above posts:

The fact is that the rate of all mental illnesses in Japan and Scandanavia is 1/3 of that in the US, UK, Australia, and New Zealand.
The factor that the latter 4 have in common is marked inequality of income distribution compared to the first two.
Inequality of income distribution is an excellent measure of social stress.

As to the relationship between parenting and ADHD-
What I am saying is that the ADHD vulnerable group is genetically different- with a difference that should be an advantage- if conditions are met for the differences in that person's makeup to be developed rather than frustrated in the course of his or her development.
Put it this way:
Genetic difference:
A child with high sensitivity, a brain that matures 3 years later and a strong tendency to a visuospatial learning pattern, and often a strong preference for tactile- kinesthetic learning styles. Such a child is highly sensitive to criticism and is likely to react to any unkindly framed criticism
by putting up the emotional barriers and becoming oppositional.

We then couple that with a school system which is overloaded, favours harsh disciplinary measures, and is quite unable to respond to the 20% of children who are substantially different in learning needs from the majority. The school system also is designed to create winners and losers- to maintain a supply of people for menial jobs. Most teachers I know are highly dedicated individuals- but they arejust overloaded. Every year some vote hungry politician comes up with the idea that what the electorate wants is less taxation- which also means less services- so the situation gets worse.

Finally - for the vast majority of us parents - life is much harder than it was for the previous generation of parents. We are mostly 2 income families now- and usually both parents come home from work simply too exhausted to give struggling, gifted children the individual attention needed to save them from the disaster they are headed for.

Incidentally- I would like to see any information that documents that there is no relationship between parenting and expression of mental distress. All I have seen so far is assertions- from Russell Barkely down.

I might add that there is now pretty clear evidence that rate of all kinds of "mental illness" ( including ADHD) is escalating in the West at an alarming rate. Another spin off of the "trickle down" effect that Reagan and Thatcher promised us.

As for the "regimented society"- we make the fundamental mistake of believing that we have to do what we are told and participate in the regimented society. It appears that in the US - 25% of the population are now "downshifters"- people who have actively decided to refuse to cooperate with the model thrust upon us.

I now prefer to hang around in places like Brunswick St in Melbourne- where today's equivalent of hippies make their home. I am actively doing all in my power to join this group- I like the fact that these people dress as they please- put such a high stock on kindness- and their choices show in their calm faces. To top it all off - If I join in and curb my consumerist tendencies I will be helping to protect the environment, and providing less tax for my government to waste.

In a tribal society us ADDers would be the medicine men and the shamans- the leaders.

Dizfriz
01-08-10, 06:08 PM
Incidentally- I would like to see any information that documents that there is no relationship between parenting and expression of mental distress. All I have seen so far is assertions- from Russell Barkely down.

Could you show where Barkley has asserted this? It would be appreciated.

Dizfriz

Kunga Dorji
01-08-10, 06:33 PM
KJ
You ask interesting questions. Let me try to help a little.

This is based on the way I see ADHD. Others of good will may disagree so take it for what it is.

We are all born with different sets of abilities (in the case of ADHD, executive functions-the ability to self regulate). These are mostly genetically determined. You can call them predispositions if you wish, it is not a bad term but the big thing is that they are pretty much "hard wired" in that, at least as far as we know, you cannot change the basic abilities by education or will. (To be clear, you can change the expression of the deficits)

Dizfriz

Dizfriz- I would suggest you look at the work of Martin Seligman- University of Pennsylvania. He is the leader in positive psychology at the moment. The aim of this movement is to train people in positive psychological processes or resilience factors. These amount to "executive functions". As per any human quzzality they are trainable- IF sufficient analysis of the constituent elements of each executive function is done.

His website is
http://www.authentichappiness.sas.upenn.edu/testcenter.aspx

Anyone can enrol on it and participate in the large number of online trials he has running at the moment.

I believe a mindfulness practice is vital to train executive functions- and the big challenge has been devising one that restless agitated people can use in their own lives. I personally have made great advances in my own mindfulness training- the first big breakthrough was in impulsive speech- rarely an issue now.
A psychologist by the name of Bruno Cayoun at The University of Tasmania presented some preliminary data on a mindfulness program he is developing for ADHD patients at the "Mind and Its Potential " conference.
He can be found at:
http://mindfulness.net.au/bruno-cayoun/
I will be attending a 10 session course with him this Feb- May in Melbourne- and am keen to see how his approach matches the one I am working on.

Dizfriz
01-08-10, 07:19 PM
Barliman

Thanks, I will look into it.

Dizfriz

Lunacie
01-08-10, 07:21 PM
KJ - I don't see ADHD or Autism Spectrum Disorders as being anything like cancer, which is an invasive disease. I see them as being more like color blindness. One learns coping techniques but one cannot change the basic inability to tell certain colors.

But that is a good point about improving one's ability to live with Autism Spectrum Disorders and why hasn't someone looked at ways to do that for ADHD. Or perhaps there has been a lot of research into that and nothing really helpful has emerged yet.

Lunacie
01-08-10, 07:32 PM
Barliman, inequality of income can also lead to more stress on parents who then are unable to provide support and encouragement for kids who needs more of those. And it can lead to less reliance on doctors to diagnose and offer expensive treatments.

And no, I'm not saying there is no coorelation between inexpert parenting and how well a kid copes with life in general, especially when there are issues like ADHD present. I'm only saying that poor parenting doesn't cause or create ADHD. I do believe in most cases these are real neuro-biological issues that some children are born with, and nothing the parents did other than pass on their genes was the cause of the disorder.

There are many factors, including environmental ones, that might account in part for the increase in diagnosis of these disorders. And the fact that in Western culture it's become the norm for both parents to work outside the home and spend much less time with the kids, especially when the kids are often busier with structured activities rather than having the freedom to be creative and just play with other kids.

I was talking with parents on another forum who were shocked with the idea of letting kids under 12 or 13 go off and play without an adult shadowing them. How do these kids learn to be independent, how do they learn to make executive decisions if they aren't given the opportunity? Trying and failing and figuring out how to do something differently so that one doesn't fail isn't taught by having a parent chart the child's activities for them.

(not sure I'm saying what I really want to as I have a migraine today - so I'll leave this for now and come back tomorrow when the weather has hopefully changed and my head is back to normal)

Archon
01-08-10, 08:03 PM
The fact is that the rate of all mental illnesses in Japan and Scandanavia is 1/3 of that in the US, UK, Australia, and New Zealand.
The factor that the latter 4 have in common is marked inequality of income distribution compared to the first two.

I'd say the most salient factor that these four countries have was that they were all British colonies? You also know that diagnosis is not equal to prevalence.

Parenting isn't as important as we think it is, crazy as that sounds (See: Steven Pinker, The Blank Slate)

*KJ*
01-08-10, 09:57 PM
I just used cancer to give perspective to my thoughts on the subject of the genetic component.

I get the impression from reading posts here, that people believe that geneticly positive = ADHD...it doesn't! It only means predisposition.

Just like when someone has the genetic code for ovarian cancer...it doesn't mean that that woman will develop it, it just means that the sun, moon and stars need to line up in the right order on the right day (so to speak) and she is more likely to get it than the person who is genetically negative...but it also doesn't mean that a person who is genetically negative has 0 risk either...just means that it needs to be a blue moon during an eclipse during their menstral period while also being overly exposed to certain risky agents...if you get my meaning.

I just think there is WAY too much emphasis put on the idea that ADHD IS genetic.

In the same way that the tabacco industry cannot cry genetics when it comes to lung cancer...not all smokers get lung cancer, because some are not genetically predisposed...yet some that aren't get it too...course those are the ones that likely smoke 4 packs a day of unfiltered for 50 years, ya know....

Noxide
01-09-10, 02:18 AM
So we can talk Aspergers and ADD and Social Anxiety but in case it hasn't really been said yet - keep this in mind when ever you read about or discuss if someone has any of those.

Everyone with this one condition may have more ADD symptoms than Asperger symptoms. Or they might have more Autism symptoms than OCD symptoms. So hence they are diagnosed with ADD or ADHD then maybe later they develop more social anxiety so they have a reversed diagnosis.

Everyone with any of those listed conditions has only been given a snapshot. We all have a different symptom of the one condition that affect us in life more than the other.

I think this is why a lot of people have the theory that these traits are part of human evolution.

Anyway, I had to clear this up for everyone who hasn't realized it yet - that when you come on this forum and you have all the different threads.
Autism, Aspergers, OCD, Bipolar - the list goes on. I think we all have all of those conditions to some degree.


Which means you don't really know anything about any of them.

Kunga Dorji
01-09-10, 05:11 AM
I'd say the most salient factor that these four countries have was that they were all British colonies? You also know that diagnosis is not equal to prevalence.

Parenting isn't as important as we think it is, crazy as that sounds (See: Steven Pinker, The Blank Slate)

This was WHO research- and the prevalence/diagnosis issue was accounted for.
I should also have mentioned that Portugal was on the list with Asutralia,US,UK, etc

Archon
01-09-10, 06:21 AM
They're talking about all mental disorders however, not just ADHD. I'm probably misinterpreting what you want to say, can you explain it for me?

Dizfriz
01-09-10, 12:18 PM
Barliman,

I got interested in what you were saying and did a little research (always a good exercise).I am going to discuss two issues in this post.

First is this quote: The fact is that the rate of all mental illnesses in Japan and Scandanavia is 1/3 of that in the US, UK, Australia, and New Zealand.I cannot locate the WHO report on the rate of mental illness. Could you give a pointer?

One question I want to look into is whether the figures reflect a true difference in occurrence or is it possibly an artifact of the assessment methods and the cultural situation. As an example, I understand that in Japan, mental illness is considered by many as shameful and has a severe cultural stigma attached to it. This would put the validity of the mental health figures for that nation at risk.

There was a good article on mental health issues in Japan at http://artsci.wustl.edu/~copeland/keren.html (http://artsci.wustl.edu/%7Ecopeland/keren.html)

Basically the reportage of mental illness is a serious problem. I do not know if the WHO report took this into account,

If you take the suicide rate as an indication of mental health then: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_suicide_rate

Rate per 100,000 ranked by total
(forgive the odd formatting, it is hard to get something to chart in the forum structure)

_________M_____ F___ total__Year
Japan____35.8___13.7__24.4__2007
Finland___31.1___9.6___20.1__2005
Austria___24.7___7.0___15.6__2006
Denmark_19.2___ 8.1___13.7__2001
Sweden__19.5___7.1____13.3_2002
NZealand_20.3__ 6.5____13.2_ 2008
Portugal__17.5___4.9___ 11.2_ 2003
US______ 17.7__ 4.5___ 11.1_ 2005
UK______ 10.4__ 3.2____6.8__2005


This is most likely culturally loaded and there are likely reporting issues but if you count suicide as an indicator of mental health then there could be some real questions on the WHO data.

What I am getting at here is that it is hard to make definitive statements on mental health from this type of data.

................. Next I looked into the wellness sites and did some more google research. It appears to be a combination of Cognitive Behavioral therapy and Buddhist meditation. While it probably would not fit well in my Deep East Texas environment I can some good results coming of of this if I read the material correctly. I may send a note on this to a friend who works with this type of approach.

Leading this back to the primary discussion. I saw nothing that would impact basic neurological/developmental factors. I really know of nothing that has been shown to change the the basic neurological issues concerned with ADHD. What I see is ways that the individual can compensate for those deficits and reduce the negative impact that can occur in specific settings. Your wellness approach might work well in many circumstances but I do not see how it could impact ADHD except as a perhaps good way of dealing with it.

I am going to give an example from myself. I have some brain damage from a very high fever when I was a young child causing deficits, some severe, which have had a major impact in my life. There is nothing I can do will make these deficits go away, nothing will change them. Neither practice, will, nor medication will make them any better. This is the nature of neurological deficits. I can and do compensate for them and reduce the negative impact they potentially could have. I have found that there are some benefits from the compensations that I find useful and those I stress. As a result, I have had a reasonably full, productive life but I have to always keep in mind that there are some things I simply cannot do that others can. Again that is the nature of neurological deficits. I see no difference with ADHD. It is there, it is not going to go away, but you can learn to compensate for it; to minimize any negative impact and emphasize any strengths that come from this.

I simply do not see the basic defects of ADHD as culturally determined. There are deficits involved as research well shows and I see no question on this. How these effect the lives of those of those with ADHD is, at least in part, involved with the culture but is more of the case of *interaction* of the individual and their culture.

You bring up interesting points that gets me to thinking. Exercise for an old brain.

Dizfriz

Lunacie
01-09-10, 02:56 PM
I just used cancer to give perspective to my thoughts on the subject of the genetic component.

I get the impression from reading posts here, that people believe that geneticly positive = ADHD...it doesn't! It only means predisposition.

Just like when someone has the genetic code for ovarian cancer...it doesn't mean that that woman will develop it, it just means that the sun, moon and stars need to line up in the right order on the right day (so to speak) and she is more likely to get it than the person who is genetically negative...but it also doesn't mean that a person who is genetically negative has 0 risk either...just means that it needs to be a blue moon during an eclipse during their menstral period while also being overly exposed to certain risky agents...if you get my meaning.

I just think there is WAY too much emphasis put on the idea that ADHD IS genetic.

In the same way that the tabacco industry cannot cry genetics when it comes to lung cancer...not all smokers get lung cancer, because some are not genetically predisposed...yet some that aren't get it too...course those are the ones that likely smoke 4 packs a day of unfiltered for 50 years, ya know....

Hm . . .I had the impression research shows that ADHD is the most genetically inherited condition there is. This doesn't mean that you will definately pass on those ADHD genetics to your child, but it does seem to indicate that if you pass on those particular genes then the child will definately have ADHD.

I do think one is born with this disorder, it's not a predisposition that is triggered by some event. I could be wrong, but that's what my reading over the last 7 years has led me to believe.

Dizfriz
01-09-10, 05:59 PM
Hm . . .I had the impression research shows that ADHD is the most genetically inherited condition there is. This doesn't mean that you will definately pass on those ADHD genetics to your child, but it does seem to indicate that if you pass on those particular genes then the child will definately have ADHD.

I do think that, for the most part, one is born with this disorder, it's not a predisposition that is triggered by some psychological event. I could be wrong, but that's what my reading over the last 7 years has led me to believe.
You are not wrong but.........

There seems to be some changes lately involved in the degree that ADHD is based on heredity. This seems to be a function of the concept that at least some of the causes of ADHD are a result of the interaction between the genetics and the environment. For example, it appears that the combination of ADHD genetics and smoking or drinking gives a greater chance of the child being diagnosed as ADHD than any of these alone. It would be heritable but not that alone.

I suspect that the researchers may be finding more of these thus a reduction of the percentages considered to be a direct genetic basis alone. Your are not wrong with what your are saying as this data is new(I just ran across it this month). I am going to do some research into this when I get time. Things change in science, that is part of it's nature.

It would not surprise me if more of this is not found in the future. This does not really change the overall picture: that ADHD is not caused by psychological issues but is a disorder resulting primarily from neurological developmental factors with a strong emphasis on heredity as the primary cause.

To recap the point: there is no convincing data indicating that ADHD can be caused by psychological events. Definitely there is no convincing evidence that bad parenting and other similar behaviors can result in ADHD.

Sigh, it seems that the things I know change too often; frustrating but good science.

Dizfriz

Lunacie
01-09-10, 06:34 PM
You are not wrong but.........

There seems to be some changes lately involved in the degree that ADHD is based on heredity. This seems to be a function of the concept that at least some of the causes of ADHD are a result of the interaction between the genetics and the environment. For example, it appears that the combination of ADHD genetics and smoking or drinking gives a greater chance of the child being diagnosed as ADHD than any of these alone. It would be heritable but not that alone.

I suspect that the researchers may be finding more of these thus a reduction of the percentages considered to be a direct genetic basis alone. Your are not wrong with what your are saying as this data is new(I just ran across it this month). I am going to do some research into this when I get time. Things change in science, that is part of it's nature.

It would not surprise me if more of this is not found in the future. This does not really change the overall picture: that ADHD is not caused by psychological issues but is a disorder resulting primarily from neurological developmental factors with a strong emphasis on heredity as the primary cause.

To recap the point: there is no convincing data indicating that ADHD can be caused by psychological events. Definitely there is no convincing evidence that bad parenting and other similar behaviors can result in ADHD.

Sigh, it seems that the things I know change too often; frustrating but good science.

Dizfriz

Interesting, that's certainly not something I'd heard anything about ... yet. If you find some information, please share?

I'd be interested in knowing what environmental factors seem to play a part. Neither of my parents smoked for instance, yet I have severe ADHD and Sensory Issues, and I have a sister with OCD, possibly ADHD, definately Anxiety and certainly Sensory Issues as well. But of the other two siblings who survived into adulthood, neither had any apparent neuro-biological issues. (one died of cancer, one's still living)

And I do admit that a child is more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD if the parents have poor parenting skills than a child whose parents are able to help the child practice coping skills and learn ways to manage their poor executive functioning.

(don't know if that makes sense as I read back through it)

*KJ*
01-11-10, 12:02 PM
I think what could be helpful here is a little genetics summary...not sure if anyone can do that...I can't that's for sure.

I have an understanding to a degree, some of which occured through testing that occured with my son, but I don't have the right words to explain it.

What I understand is that every person has 2 sets of genes, one from thier mom & one from their dad. The combination is somewhat random...ie which of the 2 genes you will aquire from your mom, and which of the 2 you will aquire from your dad.

Now, there are some things that if you get a copy from your mom & from your dad that you will 100% aquire. Like brown hair. Now, just because both your parents have brown hair doesn't mean that you will aquire 2 brown hair genes, because one of your parents could also be carrying a red hair gene, and the other a blond.

What I don't know is what happens when you get a copy of red & a copy of blond...

And then there are other things like inborn errors (this is where I have our experience - he was found to be negative, phew, but loads of testing occured). Anyway, I think the question is whether ADHD is considered an 'error' I think not, but whatever, in this case, it's much like the hair color thing, 2 copies MUST be past to actually HAVE the error occur. But that error could still be passed (as in the person becomes a carrier). In the carrier case, the person would aquire 1 copy of the error and 1 copy of of the nonerror.

But then there is this other case, that I understand things like cancer, and ADHD to be in the category of...meaning even if you aquire 2 copies it is not 100% that you will get it...like asthma, like sesativity to the sun, or high blood pressure, diabetes, auto-immune disorders, endocrine disorders, arthritis, caveties, heart attacks stuff like that.

I don't know the facts, or even the technical jargon, just know that these types of things put those with the gene at a higher risk, perhaps a MUCH higher risk, but it's not a definate.

And it's also true that brown hair may be the most past on hair color, but that doesn't change the laws of genetics, if you know what I mean. The bottom line is, commonality does not have anything to do with what turns a gene on (or off depending on the situation).

Lunacie
01-11-10, 02:33 PM
Maybe I'm not able to explain myself clearly.

I do understand the statistics from where one or both parents has ADD, where other siblings have ADD, and that's not ever a 100% assurance that you'll be born with ADD.

I am saying that once everything comes together in the womb, either that baby is going to be born with ADD or she isn't.

In most cases, that seems to be all there is to it. In a very small percentage of cases, trauma causes ADD or something like ADD.

*KJ*
01-11-10, 02:46 PM
I am saying that once everything comes together in the womb, either that baby is going to be born with ADD or she isn't.


I think I'm not explaining things well...

This is not true.

I don't know the termenology for this...there are some things that your statement is true for, but there are others that it is not.

If genetics are such that a baby is born with the "ADHD gene" it is similar to the case where a baby is born with a "cancer gene." It requires another influence to activate it.

It means that the risk exists, not that the condition does.

But it doesn't mean that NOT having the gene means you are risk-free either.

Like in the case of lung cancer:

- Having a lung cancer gene and being a smoker puts a person at a pretty high risk of developing lung cancer...likely close to 100%.

- Not having the gene and smoking 4 packs a day of unfiltered would put you in a pretty high risk group too. So too would being exposed to other known carcinogens, like aspestos.

- But it's also true that having the gene and doing all that you could to mediate the risks could be effective in eliminating your risks.

I wish there was someone that could explain this better...and I can't research now, but if someone doesn't come by, I will, and post something...

*KJ*
01-11-10, 03:03 PM
ehhh...I had to look, couldn't wait...

here are a couple good links:

http://www.geneticfutures.com/thegift/info/sheet2.asp

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_testing

So ADHD would be considered genetically multifactorial.

Dizfriz
01-11-10, 03:15 PM
I am saying that once everything comes together in the womb, either that baby is going to be born with ADD or she isn't.

With the genetic based ADHD, the child will have executive function deficits from conception (at least as far as we know right now) but being diagnosed as ADHD depends on the situation. Always keep in mind that to have a diagnosis of ADHD one must show a clinically significant impairment in social, academic, or occupational functioning.

You are basically right but just to clarify.

Dizfriz

Lunacie
01-11-10, 03:47 PM
With the genetic based ADHD, the child will have executive function deficits from conception (at least as far as we know right now) but being diagnosed as ADHD depends on the situation. Always keep in mind that to have a diagnosis of ADHD one must show a clinically significant impairment in social, academic, or occupational functioning.

You are basically right but just to clarify.

Dizfriz

Thanks. Not everyone with cancer (since that was a previous example) gets the right diagnosis either. My mother was sick for at least two years, had half a dozen diagnosis from inner ear problems to who knows what. When the cancer spread to her brain, it was still missed, until it caused paralysis on one side of her face. If not for that, it would likely have taken an autopsy to determine the cause of her death.

I'm not talking about whether ADD is confirmed by a diagnosis. If the child has ADD, whether they are diagnosed or not, they still have it. As far as I know, in the majority of cases, they were born with it.

I'll go back now and read the links. Apparently KJ believes that although a child may be born with all the pieces of the puzzle in place, it takes something like an event or an environmental trigger to actually put the puzzle together. Hm...

Lunacie
01-11-10, 04:00 PM
ehhh...I had to look, couldn't wait...

here are a couple good links:

http://www.geneticfutures.com/thegift/info/sheet2.asp

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genetic_testing

So ADHD would be considered genetically multifactorial.

From the first link:

The difference between a recessive and a dominant condition
It is worth emphasizing the exact difference between a recessive and a dominant condition. In the latter case, a defective copy of the gene is doing something that actively harms the body. One copy, on its own, is therefore sufficient to do serious damage, even when its partner gene is normal. Therefore, such a gene dominates. In the case of a recessive disease, the responsible gene is failing to make a crucial protein. In carriers, one copy of the gene makes enough of this protein for normal function, while the other does not produce a working protein. Such is the adaptability of the human body that carriers usually get by on half a dose of protein. Only when a person gets two faulty copies of a gene are they in a position in which no functional protein is being made. Then they suffer from symptoms due to the lack of that protein.

It's my understanding that Autism Spectrum Disorders and ADHD are recessive conditions - meaning the body/brain is not producing whatever protein is necessary for correct brain chemistry. That's quite a bit different from dominant conditions. Just wanted to finish this post before I dash back to school to pick up a sick kiddo.

*KJ*
01-11-10, 05:05 PM
From what I understand both ADHD and ASDs are a connectivity problems. In that the brain is not functioning properly. Not that it's missing anything. Although there could be nutritional type deficits (like a vitamin deficiency)that can influence activity and also the presence of something that can influence things too (as in an allergy or metabolic response).

But in general it's about hardwiring. But it's important to keep in mind that hardwiring occurs as a process of learning. You are not born with your wiring, just the tendency to wire one way versus another. This I believe is the basis of the argument that 'artistic' is the true nature of ADHD, or the hunter gatherer idea.

Some people have 'traits' and yup that can be just as genetic as anything else. Why you see things like doctors, lawyers, engineers, artist, adventurers, etc. cluster in families. So some believe that this tendency to wire in a more abstract way may infact be the 'error' on display. And why many argue that it's not an error at all.

But that highlights my big question about why remediation isn't the 'treatment' of choice. Why isn't the 'deficit' in executive functioning tackled much like any other cognitive deficit is...like those with dyslexia...in that case the wiring took the wrong course such that when the eye sees the word 'saw' the brain interprets it as 'was' or when the eye sees the letter 'b' the brain interprets it as 'd', etc. So the current 'treatment' is to 'rewire' that connection...because the brain has that flexibility...just like if there was some major trauma it can be rewired to use an entirely different part of the brain to compensate...it basically boils down to learning (where learning = making a connection).

From what I understand, dyslexia isn't as simple as just identifying those pieces or recognizing letters correctly, it goes deeper. The reason for the mental 'misfiling' has to do with an underlying misunderstanding (or error in connection). This error is about basic language rules that many of us just 'pick-up' intuitively...but for dyslexics, they need to formerly learn these things...in much the same way that an ASDer need to learn basic social skills...things that come so naturally to most...and my question is why isn't the same view taken when it comes to ADHDers and exectutive functioning.

So no, one is not born with ADHD, they are born with the tendency. If all the right forces are put into place those connections can be made in either a 'typical' way or in an 'atypical' way.

And I do think it is quite possible for other (maybe some of the same) forces to produce ADHD in someone that does not have the gene as well.

A really good example would be someone like myself who has hypothyroidism. Untreated (and even treated to some degree) I have all the classic symptoms. And this is where it gets hairy I think. Then you've got to ask yourself, what is ADHD? Is it a collection of symptoms, meaning that I too have it as a byproduct of hypothyroidism. Or is it ONLY those that have the gene...as in a physical basis for it as well.

And if that's the case should we all get our children genetically tested so we can determine proper treatemnt?

Course you couldn't tell someone with lung cancer that they don't have it because they don't have the gene...which I'm sure the tabacco industry would love...but it's not the case.

I just think there is plain old too much emphasis put on the genetics of it all. Not that it should be ignored...because the friend I mentioned above, she is now in possession of some really important information. She isn't resigning herself to the fact that she will develop these god aweful cancers, she will see an expert and make some very difficult choices about how to manage her risks.

I think this is the approach that should be taken with ADHD as well. This is my only point. I don't want to argue or debate, I just find it very upsetting to see such a switch in approach when the only thing that has changed (for my son) are the letters in his diagnosis.

He is still the same, and I am quite certain that he will still respond just as favorably to all the same things that have catapolted him off the spectrum. I could be wrong, time will tell, but I continue to stay connected with the ASD world, because (in my mind) they are making WAY more progress there as far as teaching kids how to make appropriate connections. And apparently my sons school agrees because they are seeing the progress too, and aren't changing protocol, in fact they are sharing our experience (pretty sucessfully) with other students too.

Lunacie
01-11-10, 05:32 PM
Yes, I agree the wiring is wonky, and in some cases the proper treatment can create a new pathway for the wiring to follow. It would be lovely if someone was able to figure out how to rewire the brain so that a person would be less impulsive and have better executive function, as well as other things.

But that doesn't change my mind that the child comes out of the womb with the wiring attached differently. I don't believe it's the parents who determine which pathway the brain fires on, it's simply the way that brain is wired, the way it was made.

I really don't see any other factors playing a part in how the child arrives in the world, although I do agree that with the right treatment, the wonky wiring can be rewired to be more effective or less problematical.

*KJ*
01-11-10, 06:42 PM
I don't see this as a matter of interpretation or opinion.

I don't have all the information at my fingertips, nor do I have the desire to resurect it, so let's just leave it as a matter of agreeing to disagree.

Princess Moon
03-28-10, 09:40 PM
You should also add in Nonverbal Learning Disorder, which is very similar and comorbid with ADD. NLD, ADD, OCD, all seem to be different levels of the same disorder. Nonverbal Learning Disorder and ADD have nearly identical symptoms. It's kind of interesting. I have ADD and OCD and some symptoms of Nonverbal Learning Disorder, but was only diagnosed with ADD and OCD and generalized anxiety disorder because my NLD symptoms were mild, I have better social skills than a lot of NLD cases and can do better socially than a lot of NLD people, but I have defecits in visual-spatial skills and fine motor skills and executive functioning. I noticed that a lot of the guys I've been involved with have ADHD impulsive while I have ADD the inattentive type. All of these conditions share characteristics.

mctavish23
04-01-10, 11:38 PM
The fact is that they overlap, but they're not the same.

Being able to accurately distinguish the difference(s) takes expertise.

tc

mctavish23

(Robert)