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What causes ADHD?

There has been a large amount of research that has been conducted into ADHD and its causes, and still a lot needs to be done. There is no clear cause that has been identified as of yet, though it appears that the condition tends to run in families. Some experts are of the understanding that ADHD occurs due to chemical imbalance in the brain that results in parts of the brain involved in controlling and managing behaviour not working properly.

Causes of ADHD

While these are the likely explanations and no doubt future research will bring new information to light, it is clear that certain risk factors do play a role in the development of ADHD. These include –

  1. Genetics – Up to 9 out of 10 children who have a family member (blood relative) suffering from ADHD will develop this condition.
  2. The mood and temperament of the child influence his/her behaviour and can lead to ADHD.
  3. Certain environmental toxins such as lead may be a cause.
  4. Maternal use of drugs, alcohol or smoking is believed to be a risk factor.
  5. In a small number of cases, it can be due to birth injuries or premature birth. This is a rare cause.

From the above causes, it appears that genetics is the primary cause. It is believed that certain other factors such as family stresses can also contribute to this condition, though this is not certain.

One thing to remember is that ADHD is not related to parenting or diet.

Genetics play an important role as a cause, though a number of risk factors can contribute to it as well.

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