Reuters reports that, in a study published in the journal Pediatrics, Food and Drug Administration researchers found that while antibiotic usage has decreased among youths in the US, more children are taking medications for ADHD.
Dr. Scott Benson, a child and adolescent psychiatrist and a spokesperson for the American Psychiatric Association, is quoted as saying, “What the article is suggesting is that the number of children that we are treating for attention deficit disorder has gone up.”
According to Dr. Benson, “For the most part I think the overall increase reflects a reduction in the stigma,” as “it used to be, ‘You’re a bad parent if you can’t get your child to behave, and you’re a doubly bad parent if you put them on medicine.'”
MedPage Today reports that researchers found that “outpatient contraceptive prescriptions jumped 93% from 2002 to 2010 among kids 17 and younger.” Meanwhile, “ADHD drug scripts rose 46% over the same period in the national analysis of prescription databases.”
Altogether, “an estimated 263 million prescriptions were dispensed for the under 18 crowd in 2010, which was down 9% from 2002 after accounting for the shifting population size over that period.”