Saturday, October 09, 2010
Genetic theory not cure for stigma of ADHD
Ben Goldacre, in an article in his Guardian Bad Science column, comments on the Lancet ADHD study (as have I in a previous post). What he emphasises is that in fact a genetic theory of ADHD may actually potentially increase, not decrease, the stigma of the condition by encouraging a social distance from people identified as genetically damaged.
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We need look no further than Pecosolido et al.'s (2010) recent work on attitudes toward mental illness in the States to see that the social instantiation of a biomedical paradigm has, if anything, increased stigma (especially for schizophrenia).
I've been reading what Brain Balance – http://www.brainbalancecenters.com – has to say about the issue: that all neurobehavioral disorders have in common an underlying condition called functional disconnection syndrome. Through diet, behavior modification, brain exercises and educational techniques that help make connections, you can reduce or eliminate symptoms. While their site doesn’t really talk cause (environment, genetics, etc.) it is worth a read, particularly the “truth” section. I think it gets to the heart of what you can DO once your loved one is affected. They are brain based, not drug based... it's a much more natural approach to improving brain function.
Of course stigma is only going to increase if you sell the lie to the world that anyone with a psychiatric label is a brain disease symptom waiting to happen.
I would give a wide berth to anyone painted as that unpredictable, anyone would.
Stigma is going to SKYROCKET until the myth of mental illness is exposed and flushed out.
Makes sense to me. I have always felt that trying to decrease stigma around mental health disorders by defining them as brain disorders (who wants one of those) was an example of robbing Peter to pay Paul.
One of the main causes of these mental health disorders are due to the sudden change of our environment. Another thing is that, if parents have that certain disease, there are more chances for them to pass that to their kids. In the fields of medicine, pharmaceutical companies have been formulating products through near infrared system that can help in stimulating the hormones that can make a person get sick.
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