Almost one in five boys of high school age, and 11 percent of school-age children overall, have received a medical diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in the United States, according to new government data.
Many doctors are concerned that ADHD diagnoses and medication are overused in children, The New York Times reports.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found an estimated 6.4 million children ages 4 to 17 had received an ADHD diagnosis at some point. This represents a 16 percent increase since 2007, and a 53 percent increase in the past 10 years.
The findings come from a CDC study of children’s health issues, which included interviews with more than 76,000 parents nationwide.
About two-thirds of those diagnosed with ADHD receive prescriptions for stimulant drugs such as Adderall or Ritalin. These drugs, while they can be very effective in treating the disorder, also have the potential for addiction, anxiety and even psychosis, the article notes.
Beedie Savage – President of Quantum Units Education