ADHD: Why the Youngest Children in a Class Are Most Likely To Be Diagnosed


ADHD is a growing problem among young children around the world. Parents are highly concerned about it as well. ADHD short for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, a behavioral issue among children aged 4-10, but it also affects people of all ages.

A person with ADHD suffers from uncontrolled inattentiveness. He/she lacks the ability to sit still and focus and can get distracted easily. Sometimes teachers in child care notice some signs of ADHD and diagnose him with it.

But researchers from Harvard Medical School suggested:

diagnosing children at such a young age might be wrong. Researchers say that children who join an elementary school at a younger age are affected more than their peers by ADHD.

The Study Published in The New England Journal of Medicine on Nov 28

The study was led by a team of researchers at Harvard Medical School and focused on the diagnosis of ADHD among younger children. The rate of ADHD diagnosis cases has risen dramatically in the past 15-20 years. Experts say an increase is caused due to a combination of factors. It is that greater recognition of ADHD. While the first one is justifiable, one of the other reasons is a misdiagnosis of ADHD which came as a big surprise to many. A researcher said that there is a possibility of a large number of kids being over-treated and over-diagnosed for ADHD. Kids are relatively immature compared to their older peers. This tricky situation leads to many to believe intuitively that these kids suffer from ADHD. Furthermore, parents are forced to take their kids for diagnosis and seek treatment for ADHD. However, this notion put forth by the researcher might be wrong.

Most states in the US have arbitrary admission dates required for admission into elementary school. That means, children who might be too young to join in can join the class. But they are still in the development phase and are immature. They lack the ability to interact successfully with the group and pay attention for a long period of time than their older peers, which lead some to believe it as a sign for ADHD. This might be particularly true for children who have 11 or 12 months age gap with the group which could lead to a significant difference in behavioral issues.

ADHD symptoms

Img Credit: Healthvermont.gov

Kids often struggle by nature to pay attention, sit still, remember things, and follow direction. But they are not the real ADHD symptoms.

You should seek child care specialist if your child is showing one or all of the following signs of ADHD:

Inattentive:

They have trouble focusing on something for longer hours. They may never finish what they have at hand and always seem to be daydreaming or dawdling too much.
           

Hyperactive:

Kids who are easily-bored, restless and fidgety are called hyperactive. A kid being hyperactive may exhibit one of the symptoms of ADHD. They may do things which they shouldn’t like climbing a tall tree or roughhouse.
           

Impulsive:

Experts observe that kids who act recklessly without any second thoughts are to be impulsive. They might find it too hard to wait and push their way forward in certain cases.

Experts are still unclear about why ADHD occurs in kids. However, they suggest that it is most probably due to genetic factors. If any of your kids start displaying ADHD symptoms, it is advisable to consult a child care specialist.

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