A new study, recently published in the Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, shows that ADHD cases have risen considerably in the United States.

Hyperactive children with exasperated parents. CANVA.COM

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is marked by an ongoing pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that interferes with functioning or development.


Per the CDC, during 2020-2022, 11.3% of children between 5-17 were diagnosed with ADHD. Historically, boys (14.5%) have a higher prevalence than girls (8.0%) to have the disorder; however, most recently, more girls are indeed being diagnosed. Those children affected by ADHD tend to skew older, falling among the 12-17-year-old age group. Yet, children as young as three-years-old can be diagnosed with ADHD.

Doctor testing child. CANVA.COM

So, what is the reason for this national increase of ADHD diagnoses? Well, according to the research study’s lead author, Melissa Danielson, a statistician at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there are three factors for this trend.

  • Doctors, parents, teachers and kids are becoming more aware of ADHD symptoms.
  • Doctors have more reason to test and diagnose children.
  • During COVID, parents were able to monitor their children closer and report symptoms to doctors immediately, leading to more screenings and diagnoses.

“There’s more providers that are comfortable with making those diagnoses and treating ADHD, which can allow for children to be helped by different medications or behavior therapy or school services. So since there are more opportunities for these kids to be helped, I think there’s more incentive to get that kind of diagnosis,” Danielson said in an interview with about the study.

Child daydreaming. CANVA.COM

Per, those with ADHD may experience an ongoing pattern these types of symptoms:

  • Inattention–having difficulty paying attention
  • Hyperactivity–having too much energy or moving and talking too much
  • Impulsivity–acting without thinking or having difficulty with self-control

Take note, signs and symptoms do follow the similar patterns, but, they do differ from child to child, boy to girl. Symptoms, of course, unquestionably differ from child to adult. If you suspect that you or your child might present with ADHD signs and symptoms, contact your doctor or pediatrician for further testing.

The results of Danielson’s study were based on a sampling group of more than 45,000 responses to the 2022 National Survey of Children’s Health.

Tiffany Silva

Tiffany Silva

Writer and Editor

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