Toddlers being medicated for ADHD, how young is too young?
POSTED: Monday, May 19, 2014 - 6:08pm
UPDATED: Tuesday, May 20, 2014 - 1:35pm
TYLER, TEXAS (KETK) — The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention releases data that thousands of toddlers are medicated for Detention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. It may be shocking to many people to know that toddlers are being medicated for ADHD. How young is too young?
The CDC estimates more than 10,000 toddlers ages two and three are being medicated for ADHD.
We spoke to a local pediatrician about this new report by the CDC. "It seems a little surprising to most of us that are parents or pediatricians," said Pediatrician Dr. Melanie Wick of Trinity Mother Frances.
One parent spoke to us about this report, "I probably wouldn't put my kids on medication that young but if parents feel strongly about it and the doctors are following some kind of procedure I guess that's their decision."
You may be thinking how it is possible when it's outside pediatric guidelines. Dr. Wick says the American Academy of Pediatrics doesn't diagnosis ADHD in children three and younger. "It's hard to imagine what somebody is finding in these 2 and 3 year olds that are giving them enough material to make this diagnosis, there's no blood test or scan or study that we do of any any that make the diagnosis of attention deficit disorder," said Dr. Wick.
Parent Brian Serda says how can they determine attention deficit at such an young age. "If a doctor in a white coat tells you to fear something then you probably are, you're talking about 2 to 4 year olds and you're giving them a curriculum at that age that they don't want to follow they're obviously not going to want to pay attention."
Common medication prescribed is Ritalin and Adderall...and doctors say the meds can stunt growth and cause other health problems.
The CDC reports more than 6-million kids ages 4 to 17 have been diagnosed with ADHD as of 2011.
If you would like more information on this report, click the link below:
Centers for Disease Control: http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/adhd/data.html