Medication Can Lower Injury Risk for ADHD Kids

New research from the Yale School of Medicine suggests children living with ADHD are much less likely to suffer from accidents or trips to the emergency room when on medication, in addition to doing better in school.

Data was collected from the Danish national health registries to study more than 700,000 people. The researchers were looking for reports of injury, ER visits as well as medications taken. Included were all children born in Denmark between 1990 and 1999, with 4,557 children diagnosed with ADHD between the ages of 5 and 10 - about one quarter of whom took a medication for ADHD for at least six months.

Researchers tracked the health of these children until 2010, as well as tracked injury rates at age 5, 10 and 12 years old. Average injury rates for those ages respectively were 11 percent, 13 percent and 16 percent. However for children with ADHD, injuries were sustained by 20 percent at age 5, 16 percent at age 10 and 18 percent at age 12.

However, the researchers added that those with ADHD who took medication showed a decrease in injury risk between age 5 and 10, falling from 19 percent to 14 percent.

Prior research has shown that ADHD disposes children to be more active and even impulsive, which can lead to greater chance of accidents. The researchers noted these results showed an important decrease, but this only shows the potential value of ADHD medication, and must be taken with a proper risk-case analysis. Often, medication is prescribed much more frequently in the US than in Denmark. However the lead author noted that children with ADHD can often do well in school without medication, as long as the parents and teachers address the issue accordingly and remain aware.Parents can also be the biggest source of injury prevention if they anticipate times of greater risk, and encourage their children to stay cautious.

ADHD medication may also present the risk of side effects, such as trouble sleeping, anorexia, reduced growth rates and headaches.  

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Sourced from: Reuters, Medication may reduce injury risk for kids with ADHD