ADHD Cases On The Rise, Data Suggests [AUDIO]
It's becoming more and more common. In fact, about one in five high school boys has been diagnosed with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD.
That's about 11 percent of all school-aged children according to recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Why the increase?
"First and foremost, we're seeing a greater recognition of the range of severity of ADHD," said Dr. Lawrence Laveman, Neurodevelopmental Pediatrician at Children's Specialized Hospital. "There is greater and greater recognition of children with milder forms of ADHD as well as a greater recognition of the more inattentive, rather than physically active form, of ADHD. Both of those are coming into play."
ADHD Awareness Increasing
Medical professionals also are finding that ADHD often goes along with other conditions.
"We often see symptoms of ADHD in children with learning disabilities and other issues and we're looking more and more at the fact that ADHD may go along with certain conditions and that's not something that we knew about before," said Dr. Laveman. "Schools also are becoming more and more aware of the condition and the need for support for children with ADHD."
The data shows that 15 percent of school-age boys have received an ADHD diagnosis compared to 7 percent in girls.
Why is ADHD More Common in Males?
"It's very common in the field of child development for boys to have a greater prevalence of developmental conditions than girls. Learning disabilities are more common in boys, autism is more common in boys as are language disorders," said Dr. Laveman.
When it comes to an ADHD diagnosis, helping the child does not mean medication alone.
"Medication alone is not the strategy. It's very important for parents to receive effective training to learn how to manage the home aspects of ADHD. It's also important for teachers to have training so they provide the child with the necessary supports in the classroom to make them more successful academically," said Dr. Laveman.