A report by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found that 10% of American children are diagnosed with ADHD. The number has remained consistent since 2007.
According to lead author Patricia Pastor of CDC’s Office of Analysis and Epidemiology, the survey relied on parent reports of diagnosis, and not medical records. It also didnot include questions about the criteria used for the ADHD diagnosis. The survey may not include all children with ADHD since itonly includes those with a formal diagnosis.
Pastor’s team combined results from the National Health Interview Surveys of 2011,2012, and 2013 to ascertain how many children ages 4 to 7 were diagnosed with ADHD in different demographic groups.
The researchers found that among all age groups combined, 9.5 percent of all children and teens have been diagnosed with ADHD. Only 3 percent of 4 and 5 year olds have been diagnosed, but among children ages 6 to 11 the number jumps to 9.5 percent.
12 percent of teens ages 12 to 17 have every been diagnosed with ADHD. Dr Andrew Adesman, chief of developmental and behavioral pediatrics at Cohen Children’s Medical Center of New York clarified what those results mean.
“In reality, we know that there are fewer teens with a current diagnosis of ADHD than grade-school kids, since at least one-third of kids with ADHD lose the diagnosis [they no longer meet diagnostic criteria] at some point during their adolescence,” Adesman said.