Two studies were recently published that shed more light on children with attention deficit disorder (ADHD). One suggests that children ‘s brains with ADHD develop more slowly, but eventually catch up with non-ADHD children’s brains. This may suggest a causal relationship for ADHD, or it may simply be as a result of the ADHD (the study couldn’t tell). Such a result doesn’t help explain why adults get ADHD, or what their brains might look like compared to adults without ADHD.

ADHD Brains

The other study found that early math and reading abilities best predict later school success — if you’re good at math in early elementary school, you’ll do well in academic achievement later. The same is true with reading skills, too, but to a lesser extent. Attention was also correlated with later school success as well.

Surprisingly, the latter researchers did not find that disruptive behaviors had any negative impact on later school achievement. So one part of ADHD — attention — seems potentially to be more important than other parts — such as disruptive behaviors. After reviewing the study, it seems likely that this study, a large-scale multi-site meta-analysis, simply couldn’t detect whether disruptive behaviors mattered or not.

Psych Central: Immature Brain May Cause ADHD

New York Times: Bad Behavior Does Not Doom Pupils, Studies Say