Friday, November 22, 2013

Childhood Attention Deficit Disorder Rates Rising

More Than One In Ten Children Now Have ADHD

Two million more children in the United States have been diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and one million more U.S. children were taking medication for ADHD over an 8 year period, according to a new study led by Center For Disease Control And Prevention. 

ADHD is one of the most common neurobehavioral disorders of childhood. It is usually first diagnosed in childhood and often lasts into adulthood.

According to CDC scientists, children are now commonly being diagnosed at a young age with half of children diagnosed with ADHD diagnosed by 6 years of age. Children with more severe ADHD tend to diagnosed even earlier, about half of them by the age of 4, based on reports by parents.

ADHD is one of the most common chronic conditions of childhood and often persists into adulthood. Children with ADHD may have trouble paying attention and/or controlling impulsive behaviors. 

Effective treatments for ADHD include medication, mental health treatment, or a combination of the two. 

In 2011-2012, 11 percent of U.S. children 4-17 years of age had been diagnosed with ADHD and 6.1 percent of U.S. children 4-17 years of age were taking medication for ADHD. Of the children with current ADHD, 69 percent were taking medication for ADHD treatment.
States vary widely in terms of the percentage of their child population diagnosed and treated with medication for ADHD, says the new report. The percentage of children with a history of an ADHD diagnosis ranges from 15 percent in Arkansas and Kentucky to 4 percent in Nevada.

Nearly one in five high school boys and one in 11 high school girls in the United States were reported by their parents as having been diagnosed with ADHD by a healthcare provider.

If you have concerns about your child’s behavior, complete the ADHD checklist, visit CDC's ADHD website and discuss your concerns with your child’s healthcare provider.

Photo: courtesy CDC

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