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Home Health Kids Kids with ADHD better off if treated earlier

Kids with ADHD better off if treated earlier

991548 72009074The sooner a child with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder starts medication, the better they will do academically, according to a recent study by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

In the study, “A Population-Based Study of Stimulant Drug Treatment of ADHD and Academic Progress in Children,” it was determined that earlier stimulant treatment of ADHD is associated with a lower risk of decline in academic performance. Girls in the study showed a definite benefit in mathematics and boys showed marginal benefits in both math and language arts, the study determined.

The study comprises data for 11,872 children born in Iceland between1994-1996 who took standardized tests in both fourth and seventh grade. Children who began drug treatment within 12 months of their fourth-grade test declined only 0.3 percentile points in math, compared with a decline of 9.4 percentile points in children who began taking medication 25 to 36 months after their fourth-grade test, the study revealed.

“The results of this population-based, nationwide study indicate that earlier treatment with ADHD drugs between the ages of 9 and 12 years is associated with a lower risk of a decline in academic performance, particularly in mathematics,” the study concluded.

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