The answer is obvious. Of course ADHD is the result of poor function of the brain. But the drug companies are experts at making people believe there is a stimulant deficiency in these cases. The PR/ advertising machine the drug companies employ is vast and powerful. Lets be clear. ADHD is not the result of a lack of amphetamines or other stimulants. There are, in fact, 7 distinct types of ADHD that can be observed by brain map.

A brain map is a 15 minute, non-invasive, computerized analysis of brain function. The different areas of the brain are measured, recorded and compared against a normative database. Brain maps have been used for many years to assess the function of the brain.

Most of drugs that are used to treat ADHD are a type of stimulant. Most people who use this or put their child on this are often told they are no big deal. I guess that depends on a person’s definition of a big deal. Each of us must weigh the benefits and risks and decide for ourselves.

Here are some examples of the risks reported by outside sources:

1. In January, a study in the journal Pediatrics found 62.5% of youth on stimulants had psychotic symptoms.

2. Research published in The Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews found the drug methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta) use was associated with a 60% risk of trouble sleeping and a 266% greater risk for decreased appetite.

3. Another article in Pediatrics looked at 9 individual studies involving children taking stimulant medication and found: it took longer to fall asleep, shorter sleep duration, and worse sleep efficiency. The lead author reported to Reuters…”Poor sleep actually exacerbates ADHD symptoms, particularly inattention…In addition to making ADHD symptoms worse, poor sleep leads to a host of other physical, cognitive and emotional problems.”

4. reported ADHD drugs send 23,000 kids to the ER every year.

5. In a study by Consumer Reports, 84% of kids who tried Adderall and drugs with similar makeup experienced side effects. Some of the side effects were nausea, insomnia, tremors, vomiting, suppressed appetite, anger, stunted growth, shortness of breath, manic behavior, headaches, flat affect and loss of patient’s personality.

6. The journal of Molecular Psychiatry published in some cases Adderall and other prescription stimulants have been reported to cause psychosis and schizophrenia-like symptoms.

7. A meta-analysis of the research literature reviewing 14 studies involving 1,379 children found found the stimulants showed “little evidence for improved academic performance.”

8. A long-term National Institute of Mental Health study of stimulant medications found…”The long-term efficacy of stimulant medication has not been demonstrated for any domain of child functioning.”

9. The Yale School of Medicine reported that exposure to amphetamines on a repeated basis caused the monkeys to display “aberrant behavior.” Some of the stimulant medications have been likened to amphetamines.

10. Robert Whitaker wrote in his book The Anatomy of An Epidemic, “The drugs alter a hyperactive child’s behavior over the short term in a manner that teachers and some parents find helpful, but other than that, the medications diminish a child’s life in many ways, and they may turn a child into an adult sigh with a reduced physiological capacity to experience joy.”

The purpose of this article is to let parents and adults dealing with ADD or ADHD know there are non-drug options. A brain map and neurological exam is a great place to start. By helping people strengthen weak areas of the brain, dealing with inflammation, and managing metabolic factors, we can often help people dealing with ADHD without the drugs. For more information, call us at The Martin Clinic at 770.237.3970 or check us out at