Researchers at Uppsala University and the Swedish Board of Health and Welfare have studied the incidence of medication for ADHD among children adopted from abroad and children born in Sweden.
The use of medication is much more common in the treatment of boys than girls, but even among girls, ADHD occurs more often in those adopted from abroad than those born in Sweden, reported Upsala Nya Tidning newspaper.
More than one out of every 20 boy adopted from abroad between the ages of 10 and 15 was at some point in 2006 medicated for the treatment of ADHD. Among boys of the same age born in Sweden, the occurrence was one in 70. More than one in eight boys from Eastern Europe were treated with medication for ADHD.
“The foremost explanation for this is that these children received neurological damage because their biological mothers abused drugs and alcohol during pregnancy. Substance abuse by the mother is often cited as the reason that the children were put up for adoption,” researcher and child psychologist Frank Lindblad told the newspaper.