Originally published July 23 2007
Ritalin stunts growth of children; long-term risk to children's health unknown
by Mike Adams, the Health Ranger, NaturalNews Editor
New research published in the August, 2007 issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry finds that Ritalin, the amphetamine drug used to treat a fictitious medical disorder labeled Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, stunts the growth of children. After three years on the psychotropic drug, children are one inch shorter and 4.4 pounds lighter than their peers, researchers have documented.
The psychiatric industry, of course, has been trying to play down the growth-stunting effects of Ritalin for at least a decade. Research conducted over the last several years by psychiatrists working for the National Institutes of Health initially found evidence of the drug stunting growth of children, yet nevertheless concluded that Ritalin carries "no long-term growth risk" to children. (Those researchers, by the way, failed to disclose their financial conflicts of interest with drug companies.)
Because of that conclusion, psychiatrists have refrained from warning parents about the fact that Ritalin stunts the growth of their children, focusing instead of how their children need "treatment" to correct a "brain chemistry disorder" that was, in reality, invented by the Big Pharma-backed psychiatric industry as a way to sell more drugs to children who don't need them.
Turning schoolchildren into street junkiesRitalin is an amphetamine. In street lingo, it's called "speed." Selling speed to children is a felony, but feeding speed to children with a prescription is called "treatment." The practice of dosing children with powerful, mind-altering drugs is, in fact, a form of chemical abuse, yet it is tolerated today because it is framed in the language of medicine. Parents and teachers all too easily agree to the mass drugging of schoolchildren because it makes symptoms of ADHD seemingly go away. This drugging practice is, ultimately, pursued for the convenience of the children's caretakers and the profits of powerful drug companies, not out of any real concern for the health of the children.
Click here to see our related CounterThink cartoon, "Adderall vs. Methamphetamines."
Nutritional research has shown that the symptoms of ADHD can be completely reversed in 80 percent of children in just two weeks by eliminating processed foods and chemical food additives from their diets. The so-called "disease" of ADHD is really just an expression of behavior caused by extreme dietary imbalances. The entire theory of ADHD can also be completely shot down by simply handing an ADHD child an X-Box or Wii gaming system, after which the child will sit down and engage in extremely focused, attentive and mentally demanding gaming activities for as long as six hours without a single break, and without distraction. If there really were such as disease as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, such behavior would not be possible.
The truth is that ADHD kids aren't diseased at all: Most schools are simply boring beyond belief, and children don't learn well by being forced to sit still at their desks and listen to teachers ramble their way through meaningless memorization exercises dubbed "history" or "science" or whatever the topic may be. Children learn by doing things, and all that extra hyperactive energy has a useful function if it's channeled into experiential learning exercises.
Does Ritalin cause permanent health damage?This new research about Ritalin stunting the growth of children does not answer the question of whether children ever regain their normal height and body weight, or whether Ritalin causes a permanent stunting of growth that cannot be reversed. It does make us wonder, however, whether a drug that stunts physical growth might also stunt the growth of brain cells and the nervous system, leading to intellectually stunted children at the same time that it produces physically stunted children.
In previous years, psychiatrists tried to argue that it wasn't Ritalin that caused the stunting of growth -- it was the ADHD disease itself, they claimed with a straight face! And thus, treatment with Ritalin was the only way to return children to "normal" growth.
This kind of twisted, circular logic typifies modern psychiatric medicine, which spontaneously invokes the existence of numerous psychiatric "disorders" at the exact coincidental moment that profitable pharmaceuticals become available to treat them. The logic of psychiatry goes like this: ADHD is a real disease because it's in the DSIM-IV manual (the bible of fictitious psychiatric disorders). ADHD is listed in the DSIM-IV because it's a real disease according to a group of Big Pharma-funded psychiatrists who made it up. Thus, ADHD is real because psychiatrists say is it! (See our related cartoon, Disease Mongers, Inc., to see a humorous depiction of this process.)
Treating children like guinea pigsNobody knows the long-term effects of Ritalin use on children. As a result, the psychiatric industry is treating children like guinea pigs, waiting to see what might happen after someone takes these amphetamines for a decade or longer. For all we know, Ritalin might stunt the size of the reproductive organs of these children, too, leading to future fertility problems. Perhaps the "Ritalin generation" won't be able to have babies. This is just a guess, but the important point here is that the psychiatric industry is guessing, too. Nobody knows. Long-term testing has not been done. It's all basically a "let's give these drugs to children and see what happens" experiment. It's all quite typical of Big Pharma today, which treats members of the public as revenue-producing guinea pigs who are too stupid to wake up and realize they should be questioning the outrageous claims of treatment now being associated with harmful prescription medications.
These side effects of stunting growth and altering the brain chemistry of children might conceivably be worth it if Ritalin were actually treating a genuine disease. If Ritalin, for example, were preventing brain cancer in at-risk children, it might be reasonable to trade a reduction of cancer risk with stunted growth. But Ritalin has no justifiable medical use whatsoever and is, in fact, more a form of chemical mind control than anything resembling real medicine. To place the growth of children at risk in order to give them a drug so powerful that it would be illegal if sold to children on the street is to engage in medical madness. There is no justification for the mass-treatment of children today with this drug other than the clever exploitation of human beings for profit.
The only medically proven use of Ritalin, it turns out, would be for parents who want their children to be short and stunted. Feed those kids enough Ritalin amphetamines, and they won't grow up to be as tall or have as much muscle mass as their peers. It might be a strategy very useful for grooming children for a career as a horse racing jockey, or growing a world-class gymnast (who are all rather short due to the physics advantage of having a shorter body and limbs), but for those parents actually looking to raise healthy children who express their full genetic potential, Ritalin seems to fall short. (Ahem.)
For those parents looking to ruin the health of their children, on the other hand, dosing kids three times a day with amphetamines seems to be quite useful. But why stop there? Why not graduate to METH amphetamines, too, and start giving your kids street meth like the militaries of the world already give to their soldiers? It makes about as much sense as giving them Ritalin, but believe me, if Big Pharma could find a way to control and legalize meth, psychiatrists would no doubt be standing by, ready to invent a fictitious disease "treated" by meth. (Remember, too, that street meth is manufactured from drug company cold medicines sold over the counter to children.)
It all makes you wonder about the Partnership For a Drug-Free America, doesn't it? This is an organization funded in part by drug companies, which seems to have no problem whatsoever about the mass drugging of children with Ritalin amphetamines. The "Partnership," in my opinion, isn't about making America drug free, it's about making America addicted to Big Pharma's drugs while curbing use of the competition: street drugs. The Partnership says, "Ritalin is a valuable medicine." Are they on crack?
Click here to read about amphetamines on Wikipedia.
Not surprisingly, when it comes to Ritalin and the drugging of children, it's all about the profit. The best way to market a drug is to first market a disorder, then pitch the drug as the only known treatment for that disorder.
The chemical abuse of childrenIn my opinion, what's happening today in psychiatric medicine is a crime against humanity and a form of chemical abuse towards children. Rather than pretending that these psychiatrists have any real medical authority, we should instead be locking them up and prosecuting them for these Nazi-style chemical assaults upon the population. Modern psychiatry, through its rampant chemical poisoning of the people, has proven itself to be far more dangerous to the safety of Americans than any terrorist threat, and in any honest society, these people would be stripped of their right to practice "medicine," and denied access to children. We need a nationwide restraining order against practitioners of modern psychiatry!
I believe it is time we abolished the industry of psychiatry and its disastrous "treatment" of children with dangerous, mind-altering chemicals. If we continue to allow these profit-minded psych doctors to drug an entire generation with amphetamines, the long-term consequences to society will no doubt be devastating. Children do not need mind-altering drugs to demonstrate normal, balanced behavior. They simply need honest nutrition, responsible parenting and to be kept away from refined sugars, petrochemical food additives and processed foods.
Ritalin / Adderall addicts snort the meds like cocaineHere's a Q&A from GoAskAlice (http://www.goaskalice.columbia.edu/3703.html) that explains, in more detail, the ways in which Ritalin and Adderall are, in fact, dangerous street drugs:
Recently I have started snorting Ritalin and Adderall (not at the same time though). I have found that the effects closely resemble that of snorting cocaine, but are not quite as intense. I really like doing this, because it's much cheaper than buying coke. However, I was wondering exactly how dangerous this might be, if even at all, considering it's a prescribed drug and I never snort more than the average dose that you would take orally. If you could tell me what the danger in doing this is and what I might possibly be doing to my body, that would be great.
Dear Adderall Addict,
Ritalin and Adderall are two of the most prevalent prescription drugs used in the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD). Both of these medications are classified as Schedule II drugs in the amphetamine class. Even though they are stimulants, when prescribed as directed by a medical provider in standard doses for people with ADHD and ADD, these prescription drugs assist people with AD(H)D to sustain their attention for a longer amount of time. This allows them to study or complete tasks at hand much more effectively minus the feelings associated with the medications' "speed-like" effects.
Schedule II drugs, such as Ritalin and Adderall, however, have a high propensity for misuse, abuse, and dependence. Widely prescribed for school-age children by medical professionals, many adolescents and young adults snort Ritalin and Adderall as they believe that they are safe alternatives to cocaine. This could not be further from the truth. First, both the potency of Ritalin and Adderall exponentially increase when they are snorted or injected because they enter the bloodstream directly. Second, prescription medications, especially when they are not prescribed for the user, as with illicit drugs, do not diminish their potential for harm. These actions make the misuse/abuses of these substances as or more harmful than cocaine, since the user may believe snorting Adderall and Ritalin is safe.
Dangerous side effects from inhaling Ritalin and Adderall include:
• respiratory problems, such as destruction of the nasal and sinus cavities and lung tissue
• irregular heartbeat (heart arrhythmia)
• problems with circulation
• psychotic episodes
• increased aggression
• toxic shock
• death, in extreme cases
As Adderall is similar in its chemical makeup to methamphetamine, it poses additional dangers. Extended, continuous abuse can result in developmental problems concerning the brain and negative changes in brain wave activity [emphasis added]. If someone misuses/abuses Ritalin, Adderall, or both, help is necessary to stop using, not only to prevent further harm, but also to keep the person safe during withdrawal. Once one has become addicted to these substances, stopping could cause withdrawal symptoms similar to those with cocaine, such as:
• severe depression
• extreme feelings of agitation
You may think that you are safer and more frugal by snorting Ritalin and Adderall, rather than cocaine, but you are harming yourself in similar ways. You also run the risk of arrest for having and using these substances without a prescription.
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