According to a recent study, A.D.D. (Attention Deficit Disorder) is the most typical diagnosis among children under 12 years of age who commit suicide.

Few children from ages 5 to 11 commit suicide and not much is known regarding these incidents. This recent study compares 87 children, ages 5 to 11, who took their own lives with 606 adolescents aged 12 to 14 who committed suicide as well.

About one third of the children of each group on the study had a mental health problem, which was known by them. The youngest who committed suicide were most likely to have had A.D.D., either with or without hyperactivity.

On the other hand, approximately two-thirds of young adolescents who died by suicide suffered from depression.

Suicide prevention focuses on pointing out children who suffer from depression, this study implements a reference that this approach might not be helpful for the youngest suicide victims. Jeffrey Bridge, the senior author of the paper and also an epidemiologist at the Research Institute at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, suggested that we might need to observe behavioral makers in younger children.

The vice president of research at the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Jill Harkavy-Friedman (not involved in the new research) said, “Not everybody who is at risk for suicide has depression,” agreeing with Bridge.

Dr. Bridge stated that the new study does not establish that A.D.D and A.D.H.D. (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) are the cause for suicide in children. Rather, the findings obtained from the research imply that “suicide is likely a more abrupt act among children.”

Some other experts were cautious due to the small population on the research and think its tough to draw conclusions based on that amount.

Child Psychiatrists, Dr. Nancy Rappaport, suspected that children who were listed or diagnosed with A.D.D. or A.D.H.D. might not have had these conditions after all. Some children having bipolar disorder are “often undiagnosed under age 12”, said Dr. Rappaport, due to the fact that their condition is many times confused with A.D.H.D.

According to researchers from Nationwide Children’s Hospital, the suicide rate among black children, ages 5 to 11, almost doubled last year. On the other hand, suicide rates for white children the same age have declined.

If you are concerned for you child with ADD, please contact a professional for help.


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Author Jim West, LMHC, NCC is a National Certified Counselor dealing with ADD, ASD, ODD and more. If you are looking for ADD experts in Orlando, please contact Jim by calling (407) 248-0030 to speak with ADHD Experts | Adolescent ADHD Orlando counselors.