Hallowell New York City
Sign In


Letter to the New York Times

by Dr.Hallowell

Dec. 5, 2012

To the Editor:

Bravo Dr. Sutherland! As a man who has both A.D.H.D. and dyslexia myself, and as a psychiatrist who's been writing about and treating children and adults with this condition for over 30 years, I know of the rampant yet preventable damage wrong information about A.D.H.D. does to children and adults every day.

The proper treatment of A.D.H.D. should always include education, a lifestyle review, coaching to develop organizational skills, and assessment of talents and strengths, not just a focus on what's going wrong. The treatment also may, but need not, include medication. First used to treat what we now call A.D.H.D. in 1937, stimulant medications have stood the tests of time and scientific review. Medication should now be a welcomed option, but it usually is not, due to wild and toxic misconceptions.

People often ask me, "Do you believe in Ritalin?" My reply is that it is not a religious principle. Yet, it is often discussed as if it were. Stimulant medications, like Ritalin and Adderall, are simply medications. When used properly, they can be a godsend, as effective in helping people who have A.D.H.D. as eyeglasses are in helping people who are near-sighted. If they do not help, or of they cause side effects, either the dosage should be changed or the medication should be discontinued. It should be as simple as that. Sadly, this sensible approach gets blown up routinely by the hyperbolic nonsense that appears too often even in responsible media. The science is clear: used properly stimulant medication is safe, in many ways safer than than aspirin, and provides the most effective short term aid we have to help people of all ages deal with the negative symptoms associated with A.D.H.D. Yet, rather than regard this medication as a helpful tool, most parents fear it, seeing it as a last resort. Stigma enshrouds stimulant medication like an impenetrable rind, preventing legions of children, as well as adults, from ever reaping the extraordinary benefits these safe and time-tested medications can provide.

Happily, we have many other powerful tools in our toolbox we can use to help people develop the many talents that are wonderfully embedded in the mind of a person who has A.D.H.D. But it is foolish to disregard the science and subscribe to the superstitions that lead people to remove stimulant medication from that toolbox.

 Edward Hallowell, M.D.
The Hallowell Center
Sudbury, MA and New York City

Edward (Ned) Hallowell, M.D.
Web site: drhallowell.com
email: DrHallowell@gmail.com

The Hallowell Center
117 West 72nd. St.
New York, NY 10023

The Hallowell Center
144 North Road
Sudbury, MA. 01776

For speaking engagements, please
contact Dianne @ 617-777-5235 or

email her at hallowellevents@drhallowell.com


Home   |  About ADD/ADHD   |   Evaluation Treatment   |  Meet Our Staff      |  Living with ADD     |  FAQs   |  Contact Us


CONTACT US AT  212.799.7777 or info@hallowellcenter.org

The Hallowell Center  © 2018 ~ 117 West 72nd Street, 3rd Floor ~ New York, NY ~ 10023  - Privacy Policy  |  Terms of Use

Website Design  by Full PartnerWebmaster Login