Parent Perceptions of Medication Treatment for Preschool Children with ADHD
This study sought to examine parent perceptions of medication use for 151 preschool children (M age = 5.05 years, 78% male, 82% Hispanic/Latino) with or at-risk for ADHD who were medication naive. Parents completed questionnaires regarding family background and perceptions of medication treatment. Parents and teachers completed ratings of child diagnostic symptomatology, behavioral functioning, and functional impairment. Results indicate that only 45% of parents were open to the possibility of medication. No associations were found between child demographics, severity of ADHD symptoms, or level of functional impairment and parental openness to medication. On the other hand, children of parents who were open to medication tended to have higher levels of oppositionality and aggression (as reported by parents but not teachers) compared with children of parents who were not open to medication. These findings are discussed in the context of early intervention given their implications for a variety of treatment providers.
KeywordsMedication treatment Parent perceptions Preschool ADHD
The research reported here was supported by the Institute of Education Sciences, U.S. Department of Education, through Grant R324A120136, as well as a local grant from The Children’s Trust (1329–7290). The opinions expressed are those of the authors and do not represent the views of the Institute, the U.S. Department of Education, or The Children’s Trust. The authors would also like to acknowledge the support of Miami-Dade County Public Schools and thank the dedicated staff and students who made this study possible. Finally, with deep appreciation, the authors would like to thank the families who participated in the study.
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