Sydney Dyslexia

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Ritalin and other stimulant don’t boost kids’ academic performance

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Imagethe Unnecessary Drugging of our ADHD/ADD children

I am not a advocate for Stimulants like Ritalin or Adderall etc. – but I am sure there is a place for them somewhere with some of the children. However, the majority of children who are on these ‘cognitive enhancers’ need not be. Most parents are aware of this and are not comfortable to put them on ‘drugs’. They do so either with pressure from the school or being persuaded by a medical professional – or they feel that they don’t want to rob their children from a learning experience they might have, if only they could sit still and focus. 

So far this was the general opinion: Taking this ‘medication’, children would calm down and learn, their academic performance improve and their also their short term memory. Often this is the case in the short term – but not in the long run…as a new study shows.

This study by the National Bureau of Economic Research – a nonprofit economics research firm – did a long term study on the use of stimulants to treat ADHD and were very surprised by the result, as published on July 8, 2013 in the Wall Street Journal:

Testing 4,000 students in Quebec over an average of 11 years, they found that boys who took ADHD drugs actually performed worse at school than those with the same symptoms who didn’t take anything. Girls had to cope with additional emotional problems while on Ritalin or Adderall.

To read the whole article:

For assessment of ADD or ADHD and the possibility of a drug-free solution, call me to discuss a new Attention Mastery Program that helps a child to focus and also improves their grades.


Author: Barbara Hoi

I have worked for 14 years with Dyslexic and Asperger geniuses one-on-one, founded Sydney Dyslexia and Autism Sydney, worked in Mosman and at a beach retreat at the Entrance and wrote three books on Dyslexia ('the Right Brain for the Right Time', 'Nurturing the Secret Garden' and 'Learning your Times Tables in Three Bold Steps'). I believe these children and adults have a great gift and the ability to become leaders in their field. But I have also found that a proper diet as well as educating and working together with parents, friends and teachers matters even more. I am now working with small groups at the Entrance Beach Retreat, helping dyslexic adults fulfill their professional dreams and parents to help develop and nurture their child's potential.

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