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Fixin' Healthcare

Saturday, January 21, 2006

The Lifestyle Chronicles - Distractions

In his article on human capital, David Brooks writes of important cognitive skills that are not measured by IQ tests and can be improved over a lifetime. He may not have been referring to mental focus and attention span but it would fit the description. In fact, there is an added twist that society seems to have declined in this ability over the past generation.

The significance of the problem can be attested to by the large numbers of people assigned to the medical classification of Attention Deficit Disorder. For example, America consumes 80% of the Ritilan produced in the world.

Attention deficit is a problem for society and it is a condition that afflicts individuals. There are a number of plausible reasons given for the increase in the incidence and severity of this problem. Most of the people who suffer with the condition do not have a medical disorder and should not be treated with medications.

Information overload is always present. It becomes a problem when associated with an absence of mental focus and attention. Mental focus and attention may well fall into the category Mr. Brooks calls cultural capital that is developed very early in life. The eargerness to use drugs has been a distraction that has delayed the development of skills to prevent and relieve the condition.

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