How Does ADHD Differ From Disruptive Behavior Disorder

Post your response to the following: Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a growing concern in the United States. How does ADHD differ from disruptive behavior disorder? How can these two disorders affect a classroom? Do you believe doctors over-prescribe medication for ADHD? Explain your answer.

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As I was reading about disruptive behavior disorder I was thinking that the percentages were a little low. I have spent some time in all of my children’s schools and many kids these days display this type of behavior. I know that the book mentions biological and genetic causes as possible precursors for this disorder, but I think it really has a lot to do with the parents. You could literally sit down and pick out the “trouble children” in a class and know that something was going on at home that was not good. Family life has a lot to do with how children act at school. ADHD is different. Some of the children that have this disorder are not even bad. They just find it very hard to stay still and/or paying attention. I also think that the development of ADHD has a lot to do with diet. My aunt had a son about the same time that I had my youngest daughter. My aunt’s son was overactive and mouthy, even when he was very young. All she did was change his diet and he was much more manageable. I don’t think that we realize just how much sugar and caffeine are in the foods and drinks that we consume. Furthermore, both disorders negatively affect the classroom experience for both teachers and children. I think it is important though for teachers to implement behaviorist principles when dealing with children like this. You can’t just punish them because sometimes that makes it worse. You have to also offer rewards for good behavior, utilizing both negative and positive reinforcement. Lastly, I do think that medication is grossly over-prescribed for children with ADHD. Ritalin should be reserved for children that cannot be controlled any other way, not as the default solution.

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Nevid, J.S., & Rathus, S.A. (2005). Psychology and the challenges of life: Adjustment in the new millennium (9th ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.


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