If you weren’t paying attention due to your untreated Attention Deficit Disorder, you may have missed the announcement of a virulent new disease discovered by those who seek and find illnesses where no one else had thought to look.
In January, for instance, The Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology breathlessly rolled out the discovery of Sluggish Cognitive Tempo, or SCT, a heretofore unnamed
scourge of childhood. I’m not making that up. The malady, once known colloquially as “daydreaming,” is now positioned for a whole range of pharmaceutical research
and development engineered to speed up cognitive tempo until or unless it accelerates to the level of Attention Deficit Disorder, at which time afflicted children will be prescribed one or another of the many alternative drugs that have been developed to get kids to slow down their cognitive activities just a tad. With the recognition of this new childhood abnormality, lobbyists are now hard at work to get the new drugs approved for insurance coverage.
But Sluggish Cognitive Tempo isn’t the only abnormality the drug company/psychiatric consortium have united to find and fix. Here are just a few others:
1) Linear Squiggling Syndrome (LSS). Once known as “doodling,” Linear Squiggling Syndrome is widespread among children from age 3 through 17. Some even carry the affliction into adulthood, exhibiting symptoms whenever they’re bored. Fortunately, pharmaceutical companies have developed drugs that fight the affliction by making it impossible for sufferers to grip a pencil.
2) Bodily Agitation Disease (BAD). Previous generations naively referred to this rampant childhood ailment as “fidgeting,” but modern science now knows how harmful it is.
3) Hematological Coagulation Obsession Disorder (HCOD). Earlier generations of pediatricians referred to this clinical disorder as “picking at scabs.” Mothers in the entire range of world languages nag children to “stop picking at that,” with exceedingly poor results. Now the psychiatric community and the pharmaceutical industry have developed both the diagnostic tools and an array of drugs that inhibit picking and scratching associated with HCOD.
4) Rapid Bi-pedal Forward Locomotion Reflex (RBFLR). Sometimes referred to as “running,” this pathological childhood behavior is being wiped out by a combination of modern science and technology. Since the rise of handheld social networking systems, children are seldom seen outdoors, the place where RBFLR symptoms were traditionally acted out. Combined with drugs administered to children co-diagnosed with ADHD, a big medical victory over RBFLR now seems attainable.
5) Companionship Anxiety Syndrome (CAS).
Sometimes referred to outside the medical community as “shyness,” this common childhood malady is being wiped out as Companionship Anxiety sufferers are being treated with maintenance doses of Xanax.
6) Vocal Repetition Reflex (VRR). Once known as “giggling,” the scientific community has discovered the dark side of this childhood affliction. VRR is not only disruptive in schools, but studies show that it does damage to the throat. Fortunately, drugs once known popularly as “downers” show remarkable success in controlling VRR.
As one drug company CEO said at a recent convocation between drug manufacturers and child psychologists: “It’s wonderful how modern science has been able to find these problems, and then to find solutions for them. Our children are the beneficiaries.”
And, he might have added, so is their profit margin.