herald

Wednesday 22 November 2017

Diabetes and child poverty are biggest ADHD risk

HAVING a mother who suffered diabetes while pregnant and a poor social background both double the risk a child being diagnosed with ADHD.

But the two factors combined boosted the chances of a child having the development disorder by the age of six a massive 14 times, a study has found.

"To our knowledge, this is the first study to evaluate how prenatal exposure to gestational diabetes and low socio-economic status together contribute to the development of ADHD," said Dr Yoko Nomura, from Queens College and Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York.



hyperactive

"The results show these children are at far greater risk for developing Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or showing signs of impaired neurocognitive and behavioural development."

Children with ADHD are typically hyperactive and impulsive. They may be easily distracted, restless, and have a short attention span.

The American researchers evaluated a group of pre-school children.

A total of 115 children with low socio-economic status (SES), a mother with a history of gestational diabetes, or both, were compared with 97 who had neither.

They showed that by the age of six, both gestational diabetes and low SES were separately associated with a doubling of ADHD risk. But the risk increased by 14 times when the two factors were added together.

hnews@herald.ie

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