Younger Kids in a Grade More Apt to be Diagnosed with ADHD

It is July and before we know it, another school year will be upon us. Over the last several months, I have had several discussions with parents in my practice regarding whether they should start their 5-year-old in Kindergarten or hold her back a year. It is a complex question with many points to consider.

A recent article published in the Journal of Pediatrics showed an approximate 75% increase among the youngest kids in a grade and the receipt of an ADHD diagnosis. In fact, if you examine the data, you can see an increase in the chance of obtaining an ADHD diagnosis with each month younger a student is relative to his or her peers. In the elementary school years, perhaps more so than in later grades, a few months makes a significant difference with regards to social and emotional maturity, as well as overall development. This immaturity can impact the ability to stay on tas…

Vaccines Dissected: Part 3

Fear magnifies risk – nothing is truer when it comes to the debate surrounding vaccines. The fear of not having all the information to make the best decision for our child; the fear of being misled and pressured to protect the greater good at the possible expense of our own; the fear of lining pockets and supporting industry at a cost beyond monetary. These statements, just printed on paper, elicit emotion and make us feel vulnerable. There is so much information available at our fingertips, but very little of it has been verified and supported through actual study. Moreover, scientific research regarding vaccines is often dry and cumbersome to explore, whereas an editorial is by nature more interesting and thought-provoking. The moment emotion enters the debate is the moment that risk becomes distorted.

I still remember being on a general surgery rotation as a 3rd year medical student and hearing about a patient who had been given an inhale…