Sunday, December 21, 2008

ADHD Pills for Everyone?

A group of scientists have recently written a commentary in Nature encouraging the legal and mainstream use of "enhancement drugs" such as Adderall and Ritalin for people who want to increase their performance in certain areas. These drugs would be made available to all people, not just those with a diagnosis of ADHD. These researchers state that "society must respond to the growing demand for cognitive enhancement" and that "we should welcome new methods to improving our brain function." These researchers argue that these medications help improve performance not only for those individuals with ADHD, but for many others without this diagnosis as well. It is clear that on university campuses around the world that students are using Ritalin and Adderall to get better grades.

Ed Silverman in his Pharmalot blog has written an excellent commentary to this article, Should Everyone Use ADHD Pills As Brain Boosters?. I encourage you to read the Nature and Silverman article and let me know what you think. For me, this is a bit scary.