Dispelling the Myths about ADHD
Myth #1: ADHD affects mainly boys.
Actually, girls are just as likely to have ADHD, but boys are more likely to be diagnosed than girls.
Myth # 2: Children with ADHD eventually outgrow it.
Studies have shown that 50% of adolescents who have ADHD will continue to have it in adulthood. Although approximately six percent of adults have ADHD, the majority are undiagnosed and only one in four of them seek treatment.
Myth #3: If you can stay absorbed in something then you don’t have ADHD.
Although people with ADHD are easily distracted, the may be able to hyper-focus intently on tasks that are stimulating and rewarding.
Myth #4: ADHD is caused by bad parenting.
When a child with ADHD disturbs in class it’s not because he wasn’t taught that this is wrong. It’s because he cannot control his impulses. The problem is rooted in brain chemistry, not discipline. In fact, punishing a child for things he can’t control can actually make ADHD symptoms worse! Professional interventions, such as medication and behavior modification therapy, are both necessary and beneficial.
Myth #5: People with ADHD are stupid or lazy.
People with ADHD often are above average intelligence. Many well known high achieving individuals including David Neeleman, founder of JetBlue and Paul Orfalea, founder of Kinko’s have ADHD.
Myth #6: Medication cures ADHD.
Ritalin has been shown to help children focus and be less hyperactive. However, it is most effective, when it is part of a larger treatment plan that includes academic help and behavior-modification treatment.
Joy Epstein, Family Therapist