February 9, 2017


Why We Should Stop Drugging Our Kids (Naomi Schaefer Riley, 2/07/16, Acculturated)

Maybe it's time to stop drugging our children. A new study from the Medical Journal of Australia has found that the youngest kids in any given class are twice as likely to be receiving medication for behavioral disorders as the older kids in the class. And the proportion of boys receiving such medication was three times as high as it was for girls.

The Australian researchers looked at data for more than 300,000 students, of whom almost 6,000 received at least one government-subsidized ADHD prescription in 2013. (The actual rate of use might have been higher given that some people presumably bought the medication without government assistance). As the study found:

"The proportion of boys receiving medication (2.9%) was much higher than that of girls (0.8%). Among children aged 6-10 years, those born in June (the last month of the recommended school-year intake) were about twice as likely (boys 1.93 times, girls 2.11 times) to have received ADHD medication as those born in the first intake month (the previous July). "

This is not the first finding of its kind. According to a 2010 article in the Journal of Health Economics, "8.4 percent of children born in the month prior to their state's cutoff date for kindergarten eligibility--who typically become the youngest and most developmentally immature children within a grade--are diagnosed with ADHD, compared to 5.1 percent of children born in the month immediately afterward."

What this means is that we are putting kids on drugs for behaving in age appropriate ways and in ways that are typical for their sex.

Posted by at February 9, 2017 7:06 PM