Nine Percent of US Kids have ADHD


A new survey reveals a rise in the numbers of American kids having attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). CDC researchers found that between 2007 to 2009, about nine percent of American children aged between 5 to 17 had ADHD. This is a slight rise from 1998 to 2000, when about seven percent of kids were diagnosed with this disorder.

No Race Differences
Racial differences in ADHD rates have gone down and the prevalence is almost equally distributed between blacks, whites and certain Hispanic groups. The researchers say this increase in rates is not significant. They say better detection and screening of ADHD may be the causes for the slight increase in rates rather than any significant rise in actual prevalence. The NIH reveals that ADHD is a common behavioral disorder in children.

ADHD Affects Boys More
Children suffering from ADHD have problems with concentration and learning, and exhibit behavioral disorders such as behaving in a hyperactive or impulsive manner. The US Census Bureau gathered data for this survey through interviews of parents. Boys are more affected than girls at 12%, compared to between five to six percent for girls.

Mexican Kids have Lowest Rate
Mexican kids have the lowest ADHD rate. The researchers attribute this to lack of access to healthcare and cultural tendencies which could lead to lesser diagnoses. ADHD was found more in poor families. The Midwest and southern US reported above-average rates of prevalence.

ADHD Kids have Other Problems Too
The researchers say ADHD poses challenges to both the health care and education systems. ADHD-affected kids need more health care and they are also like to suffer from other conditions like learning disabilities, conduct disorder or asthma. Thus, managing them becomes difficult for parents, physicians and schools. Health experts say greater awareness of ADHD is the reason for the rise in diagnosis rates among children.

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