“Among all children, including all socioeconomic groups, the incidence of A.D.D. is estimated at 8 percent. What we found was that the environment of the child predicted development of A.D.D. problems. In stark contrast, measures of neurological anomalies at birth, I.Q. and infant temperament — including infant activity level — did not predict A.D.D.
Plenty of affluent children are also diagnosed with A.D.D. Behavior problems in children have many possible sources. Among them are family stresses like domestic violence, lack of social support from friends or relatives, chaotic living situations, including frequent moves, and, especially, patterns of parental intrusiveness that involve stimulation for which the baby is not prepared. For example, a 6-month-old baby is playing, and the parent picks it up quickly from behind and plunges it in the bath. Or a 3-year-old is becoming frustrated in solving a problem, and a parent taunts or ridicules. Such practices excessively stimulate and also compromise the child’s developing capacity for self-regulation.”
This is an excellent article by a research psychologist who insists we go beyond a neurochemical understanding of ADHD. He points to the possible environmental, and parenting deficiencies (really, the lack of parenting knowledge) that he says can worsen a child’s attention problems. He also points to the need for other than pharmacological solutions to achieve long term improvement. This is one of those voices who needs to be heard beyond the headlines…this debate is too often positioned as pro or anti meds. Read more. MentalHealthMomBlog.
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