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Georgia Journal of Science

Article Title

THE ROLE OF SOCIOECONOMIC STATUS IS THE LIVES OF PATIENTS WITH ATTENTION DEFICIT DISORDER**

Abstract

Attention Deficit Disorder is at one of the highest peaks of clinical diagnosis since the 1990s. Although clinical diagnosis rates are high, a significant number of people self-diagnose. Preliminary research suggests that this is due both to the stigmas that surround ADD diagnosis and to lack of access to resources. This study focuses specifically on the role of socioeconomic status in ADD diagnosis and treatment through illness narrative interviews with those that consider themselves to have ADD with either a clinical or self-diagnosis. Medical Anthropology shows that it is valuable to look at socioeconomic status because it acts as a social determinant of health and may be a source of health disparities for those with ADD. To fully understand the role that socioeconomic status plays in the lives of those with Attention Deficit Disorder, I examine how stigmas and access to resources play a part in the patients’ lives. From the perspective of medical anthropology, scholarly literature suggests that Attention Deficit Disorder carries negative social stigmas such as being viewed as zombie-like and anti-social. These stigmas impact educational settings by impacting how educators view and interact with students with ADD. This study is significant because there are not many writings about ADD and health disparities. Identifying ADD as a health disparity and the negative stigmas that surround the disorder can help people identify and understand that the struggles of individuals with ADD may be shaped by socioeconomic status.

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