“I don’t have a whole lot of choice,” said Dr. Anderson, a pediatrician for many poor families in Cherokee County, north of Atlanta. “We’ve decided as a society that it’s too expensive to modify the kid’s environment. So we have to modify the kid.”
Dr. Anderson is one of the more outspoken proponents of an idea that is gaining interest among some physicians. They are prescribing stimulants to struggling students in schools starved of extra money — not to treat A.D.H.D., necessarily, but to boost their academic performance.
It wasn’t until after I graduated from college that I discovered that I had friends who secretly used Aderall to help them focus during midterms and final exams. Back then, using pharmaceuticals as a study aid wasn’t as prevalent as it is today, and it appears that medicating students who seem to have difficulties focusing in school has become much more commonplace. This is not to say that there aren’t actual people who have attention disorders, but there’s definitely a generation of kids growing up who don’t need to be on medication but are during a time when their brains are still developing. We’ll see what the long-term effects are soon enough! [via]