ADHD and academic achievement

The link between Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and academic performance is a complex one, a new study carried out by Lee Thompson - Chair of Case Western Reserve University's Psychological Sciences Department - and colleagues, has found.

It showed that the link involves the interaction of genes and environment.

The investigation has been published in the journal Psychological Science and considered the influences with regards to the impact they have on reading ability, mathematics performance and the continuum of ADHD behaviour.

Mr Thompson said: "If we have this much overlap between genes that affect behaviours of ADHD and academic achievement, it gives validity to the relation of ADHD behaviours and poor academics."

However, he added there are different approaches for interventions that can be taken based on the extent of environmental influence on ADHD tendencies.

Chartered Psychologist and Chartered Scientist Barry Bourne said: "The results of a piece of action research, which I conducted last year and which were reported in ADHD in Practice, Nov 2010, Volume Two Number Three, outlined the crucial involvement of deficiencies in working memory in many of those with a diagnosis of ADD/ADHD, which also would appear to be one of the reasons for the relatively high comorbidity levels between ADD/ADHD and other neurodevelopmental 'disorders'."

"The results of clinical practice over 40 years led to the above piece of action research."

"I wonder if the link between poor feeding and sleeping babies is due to the underlying neurobiological deficits in those with inherited ADHD, rather than vice-versa?"

A recent study published in Archives of Disease in Childhood showed that babies who have difficulties with feeding and sleeping can be at greater risk of developing behavioural problems such as ADHD.