What if attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder symptoms are indicators of sleep deficits?
A recent opinion piece by Vatsal G. Thakkar in the New York Times Sunday Review (4/27/13) Diagnosing the Wrong Disorder, asks the question, “What if a substantial proportion of cases are really sleep disorders in disguise?
Thakkar, a clinical assistant professor of psychiatry at the N.Y.U. School of Medicine, raises some important questions and issues. Partly because of personal experience with a misdiagnosed sleep disorder Thakkar wrestles with the chicken-and-egg problem of causality between attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder symptoms and sleep deficits. He questions whether the presence of the condition gives rise to enduring problems with sleep or whether sleep problems give rise to symptoms that mimic those of A.D.H.D.
Insufficient sleep is no laughing matter. This essay is an important one for post-secondary disability support providers, special education teachers, parents and anyone struggling with A.D.H.D. symptoms or fatigue.
Insufficient sleep also contributes to other serious health risks as shown in the slide show found here: Sleep Deprivation Effects: 8 Scary Side Effects Of Too Little Shut-Eye. Healthline.com also has an article discussing deprivation: 16 Effects of Sleep Deprivation on the Body.