Happy Kids

We are well versed with a report talking about the influence of video games on the attention spans of children. This study by University of Edinburgh professionals cites that many younger kids are being wrongly diagnosed and treated for ADHD, as compared to their peers in the same class.

In the study, nearly 937,943 kids aged between 6 and 12 years were incorporated. The team found that December-born students faced 39% more likelihood of being diagnosed with ADHD than their January-born counterparts. This effect appeared to be pronounced in both girls and boys. Girls who were younger than their peers by one month experienced 70% more chances of being labelled with ADHD, considering their lower maturity levels.

“Our study suggests younger, less mature children are inappropriately being labeled and treated. It is important not to expose children to potential harms from unnecessary diagnosis and use of medications,” commented lead author Richard Morrow, a health research analyst in the Dept. of Anesthesiology, Pharmacology and Therapeutics.

Some of the drugs used to treat ADHD are inclusive of Adderall, Ritalin, Strattera and Dexedrine, which could lead to negative effects in the form of sleep disturbances, slower growth cycles and risk for heart diseases. Moreover, younger children who are termed to be affected by ADHD may develop low social esteem due to negative self-perception.

The scientists urged that kids should be optimally assessed and not be subjected to unnecessary medications for ADHD. This report is published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.