Study: ADHD kids usually have ADHD parents

Jan. 20, 2004 at 10:13 AM
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COLLEGE PARK, Md., Jan. 20 (UPI) -- Maryland researchers say parents of a child with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder should be tested for the condition themselves.

A recent study by University of Maryland researchers found parents of children who have ADHD are more than 20 times more likely to have ADHD than parents whose children do not.

Further, if their children also have other serious behavioral problems, the parents' risk for such disorders, such as depression, anxiety and substance abuse, is as much as five times the norm.

The study is summarized in the December issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry.

"It's critical to have parents performing at their best," Andrea Chronis, director of the ADHD program at the University of Maryland and the study's lead author, told the Washington Post, "so that the child can perform as well as possible. ... (But) if a child has ADHD and the parents do, too, you can imagine the difficulties."

ADHD, which affects an estimated 3 percent to 7 percent of school-age children, often continues into adulthood.

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