New research published in JAMA Pediatrics has found that children under the age of three who are exposed to domestic violence or have a parent who is depressed may have a higher risk of developing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) when they are older, reports CNN.
The study, conducted by researchers at the Indiana University School of Medicine, included more than 2000 children.
“What it highlights is that as pediatricians, we have a responsibility and a duty to actively monitor children for behavioral mental health issues,” lead study author Dr. Nerissa Bauer, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the IU School of Medicine, told CNN.
The authors advocate for screening and monitoring children for behavioral health issues, particularly when pediatricians are aware that there may be issues of violence in the home or parental depression. They note that earlier identification can lead to better long-term outcomes.