Minorities face barriers to effective ADHD treatments, study contends

May 12, 2010

Several barriers prevent minority children with ADHD from receiving the most effective treatments, according to a new study by Michigan State University researchers.

In the May issue of the Journal of Attention Disorders, the researchers argue schools and communities should do a better job of getting information to minority families about the combined benefit of medication and counseling for .

"ADHD has multiple causes and multiple treatment approaches are warranted," said John Carlson, associate professor of school psychology. Carlson co-authored the study with Andy Pham, a recent Ph.D. graduate, and John Kosciulek, professor of rehabilitation counseling.

More than 4.5 million children have been diagnosed with ADHD in the United States, making it one of the most common childhood disorders, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The disorder, characterized by and inattentiveness, often lasts into adulthood. Causes include both biological and environmental factors, the study said.

Medication such as Ritalin has shown to decrease hyperactivity in children with ADHD, while counseling such as behavior therapy and parent training can lead to improved relationships with family and friends, Carlson said. The treatments can be successfully combined to treat severe behavioral problems, he said.

But according to study, which included a scientific survey of parents, blacks and Latinos are less likely than whites to consider combining medication and counseling for their children. The barriers preventing minorities from seeking and using these treatments include a lack of culturally competent health-care providers, financial hurdles and little dissemination of information about treatments that work.

Pham said the "significant increase in diagnosed with ADHD" intensifies the need for parents to be informed of all treatment options.

"Parents may bring different cultural beliefs to the treatment context," Pham said. "Therefore practitioners such as physicians and school psychologists must build on their own cultural knowledge when working with families to determine the best course of action."

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Anti-stress compound reduces obesity and diabetes

December 13, 2017
For the first time, scientists from the Max Planck Institute of Psychiatry in Munich could prove that a stress protein found in muscle has a diabetes promoting effect. This finding could pave the way to a completely new treatment ...

Encouraging risk-taking in children may reduce the prevalence of childhood anxiety

December 13, 2017
A new international study suggests that parents who employ challenging parent behavioural (CPB) methods – active physical and verbal behaviours that encourage children to push their limits – are likely protecting their ...

Researchers link epigenetic aging to bipolar disorder

December 12, 2017
Bipolar disorder may involve accelerated epigenetic aging, which could explain why persons with the disorder are more likely to have - and die from - age-related diseases, according to researchers from The University of Texas ...

Researchers find common psychological traits in group of Italians aged 90 to 101

December 12, 2017
In remote Italian villages nestled between the Mediterranean Sea and mountains lives a group of several hundred citizens over the age of 90. Researchers at the University of Rome La Sapienza and University of California San ...

Your mood depends on the food you eat, and what you should eat changes as you get older

December 11, 2017
Diet and dietary practices differentially affect mental health in young adults versus older adults, according to new research from Binghamton University, State University of New York.

Twitter can reveal our shared mood

December 11, 2017
In the largest study of its kind, researchers from the University of Bristol have analysed mood indicators in text from 800 million anonymous messages posted on Twitter. These tweets were found to reflect strong patterns ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.