NY Times - "Younger Students More Likely to Get ADHD Drugs"
Younger students score worse on standardized tests than their older classmates and are more likely to be prescribed stimulants for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, according to a new study published in the journal Pediatrics. The study used data on elementary and middle school students in Iceland, where health and academic measures are tracked nationally and stimulant prescription rates are high and on par with rates in the United States. Dr. Helga Zoega, lead author of the study and a postdoctoral fellow at Mount Sinai School of Medicine, noted that the differences, including the disparity in stimulant prescribing rates, continue over time. "We were surprised to see that," said Dr. Zoega. "It may be that the youngest kids in class are just acting according to their age. But their behavior is thought of as symptoms of something else, rather than maturity." Learn more