Adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) were sexually and physically abused before they turned 16 than their peers without ADHD, reports a study from researchers at the University of Toronto.
Investigators examined data from a nationally representative sample of 12,877 women and 10,496 men in the 2012 Canadian Community Health Survey-Mental Health. Physical abuse was reported by 44% women and 41% men with ADHD compared to 21% women and 31% men without the condition.
Prof. Esme Fuller-Thomson, co-author and Factor-Inwentash Faculty of SocialWork, said, "These findings suggest there is a silent epidemic of abuse among people and particularly women with ADHD."
He noted that the data cannot clarify the direction of association. "No matter who is the perpetrator, it is very important that health professionals working with children with ADHD screen them for sexual and physical abuse," said, Danielle Lewis, a graduate student in U of T's Masters of Social Work program.