Book Recommendation: ADHD Does Not Exist – The Truth About Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, by Richard Saul, M.D.

wheeliesThe title of this book is likely intended to be provocative. When I first saw it on the library shelf, it piqued my curiosity. Richard Saul has specialties in pediatrics and neurology, and does not deny that the symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder are extremely common. He does feel that we are short-changing sufferers by taking a quick look at the symptoms and jumping to conclusions.
Dr. Saul cites evidence that ADHD symptoms come from a wide variety of sources, and that doctors need to look a little deeper and treat the source. He goes on to name several in the order of the frequency with which he has encountered them in his own practice. The most common? Vision and hearing problems! He cited the case of a girl whose symptoms showed up when she could not see the blackboard at school; those same symptoms disappeared once her vision was checked and she was fitted with eyeglasses. Simple solution, no?
Dr. Saul talked about looking for sudden onset, indicating some cases are related to a recent change in circumstances. He also wrote about checking to see if the symptoms occurred only under certain conditions, such as only during math class, as a clue to what could be the underlying cause.
As a physician, Richard Saul advocates for thorough assessment, and against premature prescription of stimulant medication. He does not for one minute deny the seriousness of dealing with these symptoms; he instead opposes treating all sufferers the same, as the root causes are as varied as nearsightedness, substance abuse, sleep problems, and (believe it or not) Aspergers syndrome. Recognized and treated properly, symptoms interpreted as ADHD can often be eliminated completely.
I highly recommend this book for anyone dealing with or curious about ADHD.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *