Apr 17, 2014
New Attention Disorder: Sluggish Cognitive Tempo
More than six million American children have received a diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, heightening the concern that the condition is being significantly misdiagnosed and over-treated with prescription medications. Yet an immerging disorder could vastly expand the number of young people being treated for attention issues. Called sluggish cognitive tempo, the condition is characterized by lethargy, daydreaming and slow mental processing. Researchers estimate it is present in perhaps two million children.
New publications have proposed that recognition of sluggish cognitive tempo could help resolve some longstanding confusion about A.D.H.D, which despite having hyperactivity in its name includes about 2 million children that are not hyperactive, merely inattentive.
“ When you start talking about things like daydreaming, mind-wandering, those types of behaviors, parents with a son or daughter who does this excessively says ‘I know about this from my own experience.’ They know what you’re talking about.” Said Keith Burkett, a professor of psychiatry at the University of California in San Francisco.
Experts pushing for more research into sluggish cognitive tempo say that it is on its way to being recognized as a legitimate disorder. Others including Dr. Allen Frances, an emeritus professor of psychiatry at Duke University, are of the opinion that while there are kids that meet the criteria for the disorder, it is not worth further investigation. “The enthusiasts here are thinking of missed patients. What about the mislabeled kids are called patients when there’s nothing wrong with them? They are not considering what is happening in the real world,” stated Dr. Frances.
Source: NY Times