Ritalin for Toddlers

Hyperactive kids are being given stimulants at younger and younger ages. Can this be good?

Attention-deficit/Hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), as anybody who has been within shouting distance of a schoolyard in the past 10 years knows, was the pediatric diagnosis of the decade. According to one estimate, some 2 million American children are bouncing off the walls with it. For parents and teachers driven to distraction by a hyperactive kid, psychotropic stimulants like Ritalin have been a godsend; thousands of students who couldn't sit still long enough to learn have been able to calm down, pay attention and get the job done, thanks to Ritalin.

For many critics, however, Ritalin has become a symbol of everything...

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