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Doctors want to diagnose ADHD starting at age four
October 17, 2011
The new guidelines update decade-old recommendations that focused on diagnosing and managing ADHD in kids aged six to 12. But behaviour problems, over-activity and trouble paying attention can show up earlier, researchers said, and ADHD often persists into adolescence or even adulthood.
Paediatricians should also look out for learning disabilities, anxiety and other issues that can go hand-in-hand with ADHD. And, they should tailor treatment with behaviour therapy and medication based on kids’ age and severity of symptoms, says a statement published in Paediatrics. (here)
According to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, between six and nine percent of kids and teens have ADHD, with rates higher in adolescents than younger kids.
“I’m glad to see the guidelines now recognize ADHD can occur both in younger children and older adolescents as well,” said Aude Henin, from Massachusetts General Hospital’s Child Cognitive-Behavioural Therapy Program. “I think those are things that have been ignored in the past.”
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