Children Deserve Better

In journalism “burying the lede” means hiding the main or most important point among distracting details.

Two major news items hit my lines this week. One was personal, one was public. Both are tragic.

A good friend’s son turned up dead. He had been battling addiction for many years, ever since he graduated from ADHD “medication” to other drugs and finally to heroin. Now he’s gone. What an absolute waste of a good life. And he’s not the only one. There are currently over six million children and adolescents taking heavy psychiatric medication for behavioral problems. None of the drug treatments cure anything. Many do cause a long list of other harms. Box warnings include stroke, heart attack, seizures, coma, sudden death and addiction. Side effects to watch for are paranoia, aggression, suicidal ideation, hallucinations, fast heart rate, dizziness, sweating, feeling hot, muscle rigidity or shakiness, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea. The package says, for instance, Stop Adderall immediately if you experience any of these symptoms. Ya think? Playing Russian roulette might be safer.

And that doesn’t take into account any long term adverse effects. If I had one wish to spare, it would be that the parents of these children would wake up tomorrow and realize that drugs are not the solution and then immediately stop the madness. (Always under a doctor’s supervision. These are not light drugs.)

The other news began with the headline, NeuroSigma Announces that Enrollment Commences in Two Large, Double-Blind Trials of eTNS for Pediatric ADHD. The ensuing article explained that children were being recruited for trials in four locations – Los Angeles at UCLA, Seattle at the Seattle Children’s Hospital, and two corresponding locations in England.

What is this eTNS, I wondered? It stands for external trigeminal nerve stimulation, and features an electronic device. The eTNS device is strapped to a child’s head, and shoots an electric signal repeatedly into the child’s brain for eight hours each night while he sleeps. The original small (67 kids) test group in 2018 was reported to show minor behavioral improvement and also reported that 50 % of the children experienced adverse side effects including headaches, fatigue, increased heart rate, insomnia and weight gain. Naturally that was enough for the FDA to immediately green-light the machine. Now they are rolling forward with more expansive trials.

Not only are we going to force the unnecessary covid19 vaccines on all American school kids, but now we will be shocking some of their brains. All in the name of help.

The buried lede in all of this is that ADHD is not a disease. There is no blood work or physical test for ADHD. No chemical imbalance or brain scan to detect anything. It is a generalized group of behavioral symptoms of unknown cause that was voted into existence some years ago. Seriously, that’s how it works.

The treatments for ADHD to date have been primarily amphetamines (Ritalin and Adderall) and other mind altering and addictive drugs. No doctor has any clue why or how the drugs “work.” Oh, they have theories and speculations but no scientific proof of anything. They can’t physically identify the disease, and they can’t explain the so-called treatment. They openly admit to all of that.

The big excitement now is that the researchers from NeuroSigma hope to get some of the six million kids currently forced to take harmful medications with known side effects, off the drugs and onto the machine. Others they expect will end up doing both drugs AND getting electricity shot into their brains. They are also going to do MRIs on 50 kids to try and figure out how the whole thing works. You got that? They don’t really have a clue and they are doing it anyway. To quote one of their top executives, “We believe this will set the stage for expanding our label into the adolescent and adjunctive populations, thereby adding tremendous value to the company.” No wonder they’re excited. Market share and money. Full speed ahead.

With so many kids missing school the past two years, there is renewed concerns for mental health. There is also a big push for more mental health screening which always leads to funneling more kids into the aforementioned unproven treatments. The smiling doctors call them safe and effective treatments. Hmmmm, where have I heard that before? I call it child abuse, plain and simple. Our children deserve better.

In case you think the doctors and scientists are always right, consider this. Did you know that Electro-convulsive therapy, ECT, is still being done on children? Despite the horrors of the past including proven severe brain damage, doctors to this day are still hooking children up to the machines and shocking their brains with enough juice to induce a grand mal seizure.

Of course the psychiatrists recommending ECT insist it is safe and effective. There’s that phrase again. No violent shaking or broken bones as in the past, they say. Patients are put under heavy anesthesia and muscle relaxers so that won’t happen. It is all very civilized. But the drugs only make it worse. Even though these Frankenstein doctors don’t have any idea how ECT works, the basic theory is that “psychiatric diseases can be treated by the selective destruction of healthy brain tissue.” Do you hear that? They are deliberately destroying healthy brain tissue and hoping for a good outcome. It is sadistic stupidity at best, evil incarnate at worst.

A good psychiatrist is nearly universally an oxymoron. One exception, Dr. Peter Breggin, had this to say about ECT, “After several routine ECTs, the damaged person becomes increasingly apathetic, indifferent, unable to feel genuine emotions, and even robotic. Memory loss and confusion worsen. This helpless individual becomes unable to voice distress or complaints, and becomes docile and manageable. ECT doctors mistakenly call this an improvement but it indicates severe and disabling brain injury.” But none of that is stopping the psychiatrists at Johns Hopkins and the Mayo Clinic. Now they are using ECT to treat children with autism.

A recent comprehensive research analysis into depression and the chemical treatments for it showed that the long-standing theory of chemical imbalance in the brain was false. No imbalance detected, no correcting a non-existent imbalance, no valid theory. That would be tens of millions of people wrongly diagnosed and wrongly treated for decades. People suffering and wondering why they aren’t improving.

Now Elon Musk is pouring millions into a company called Neuralink to develop a robotic machine that implants 3000 wires into the brain with computer access. They are talking about treating depression and other behavior problems, despite there being zero science to back up doing anything like that. As expected, in 2020 the FDA actually approved human experiments. Many scientists predict this won’t end well.

So beware. Doctors can sometimes be very wrong. And when it comes to children, it really matters. Our children are the future. We should love and protect them. I can say with confidence that giving them drugs or sending electricity into their brains is something else entirely.

-Ed Thompson

Related Resources

Dr. Peter Breggin ECT (electro-convulsive therapy) and DBS (deep brain stimulation) Resources Center

Neuralink and Dr. Peter Breggin

Fight for Kids | Drug Side Effects: Facts about the Psychiatric Drugs Given to Children

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