Prevalence of psychiatric disorders in preschoolers

Department of Psychology, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway.
Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 5.67). 12/2011; 53(6):695-705. DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2011.02514.x
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT   Many disorders in childhood and adolescence were already present in the preschool years. However, there is little empirical research on the prevalence of psychiatric disorders in young children. A true community study using structured diagnostic tools has yet to be published.
  All children born in 2003 or 2004 in the city of Trondheim, Norway, who attended the regular community health check-up for 4-year-olds (97.2% of eligible children) whose parents consented to take part in the study (N = 2,475, 82.0%) were screened for behavioral and emotional problems with the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ). A screen-stratified subsample of 1,250 children took part in a furthermore comprehensive study including a structured diagnostic interview (the Preschool Age Psychiatric Assessment, PAPA), which 995 parents (79.6%) completed.
  The estimated population rate for any psychiatric disorder (excluding encopresis - 6.4%) was 7.1%. The most common disorders were attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (1.9%), oppositional defiant disorder (1.8%), conduct disorder (0.7%), anxiety disorders (1.5%), and depressive disorders (2.0%). Comorbidity among disorders was common. More emotional and behavioral disorders were seen in children whose parents did not live together and in those of low socioeconomic status. Boys more often had attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and depressive disorders than girls.
  The prevalence of disorders among preschoolers was lower than in previous studies from the USA. Comorbidity was frequent and there was a male preponderance in ADHD and depression at this early age. These results underscore the fact that the most common disorders of childhood can already be diagnosed in preschoolers. However, rates of disorder in Norway may be lower than in the USA.

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    • "Finally the rate of depression in our study is higher than in the general population of the same age, with general population studies reporting rates of 2.1 and 2.0 % respectively (Egger and Angold 2006; Wichstrom et al. 2012). Our rate of ADHD, 59.1 %, and its association with male sex, is consistent with other studies (de Bruin et al. 2007; Mukaddes et al. 2010; Witwer et al. 2012) although slightly higher than others (Leyfer et al. 2006; Simonoff et al. 2008). "
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    ABSTRACT: We employed a clinical sample of young children with ASD, with and without intellectual disability, to determine the rate and type of psychiatric disorders and possible association with risk factors. We assessed 101 children (57 males, 44 females) aged 4.5-9.8 years. 90.5 % of the sample met the criteria. Most common diagnoses were: generalized anxiety disorder (66.5 %), specific phobias (52.7 %) and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (59.1 %). Boys were more likely to have oppositional defiant disorder (OR 3.9). Higher IQ was associated with anxiety disorders (OR 2.9) and older age with agoraphobia (OR 5.8). Night terrors was associated with parental psychological distress (OR 14.2). Most young ASD children met the criteria for additional psychopathology.
    Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders 03/2015; DOI:10.1007/s10803-015-2361-5 · 3.34 Impact Factor
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    • "SM is relatively rare, with a prevalence of about 0.7–0.8% in childhood, somewhat more frequent in girls (Bergman, Piacentini, & McCracken , 2002). A 0.1% prevalence of SM was found in a representative sample of Norwegian 4 year olds using a preschool diagnostic interview (Wichstrom et al., 2012). SM is considered to be hard to treat and the literature on treatment for SM is dominated by case studies or case series. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background Randomized controlled psychosocial treatment studies on selective mutism (SM) are lacking. Method Overall, 24 children with SM, aged 3–9 years, were randomized to 3 months treatment (n = 12) or wait list (n = 12). Primary outcome measure was the School Speech Questionnaire. ResultsA significant time by group interaction was found (p = .029) with significantly increased speech in the treatment group (p = .004) and no change in wait list controls (p = .936). A time by age interaction favoured younger children (p = .029). Clinical trail registration: Norwegian Research CouncilNCT01002196. Conclusions The treatment significantly improved speech. Greater improvement in the younger age group highlights the importance of an early intervention.
    Child and Adolescent Mental Health 09/2014; 19(3):192-194. DOI:10.1111/camh.12045 · 0.95 Impact Factor
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    • "If our findings were mainly a result of referral bias due to increased referral of boys or a higher referral threshold for girls before puberty, we would not expect several studies of non-clinical samples to show the same pattern (Verhulst et al. 1985; Anderson et al. 1987; McGee et al. 1992; Gomez-Beneyto et al. 1994; Angold et al. 1998; Almqvist et al. 1999; Petersen et al. 2006; Wichstrom et al. 2012). Neither, would we expect this referral pattern to reverse at puberty. "
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    ABSTRACT: Background The post-pubertal association of female gender with emotional disorder is a robust finding. However, studies exploring the association of gender and emotional disorders before puberty are few and present diverging results. The aim of this study was to present gender-specific incidence rates of emotional disorders throughout childhood.Method This is a population-based cohort study of 907 806 Danish 3- to 18-year-olds. The outcome was assignment of an emotional disorder diagnosis based on in-patient and out-patient data from The Danish Psychiatric Central Register. Outcome measures were incidence rates and cumulative incidences for unipolar depressive disorder (ICD-10: F32-F33), anxiety disorders (ICD-10: F40-F42), and emotional disorders with onset specific to childhood (ICD-10: F93).Results Pre-pubertal incidence rates for depressive and anxiety disorders were higher for boys than girls. At age 12 years the pattern reversed. The cumulative incidence for any emotional disorder (F32-F33, F40-F42, F93) on the 11th birthday was 0.52% (95% CI 0.50-0.55) for boys and 0.31% (95% CI 0.29-0.33) for girls. On the 19th birthday cumulative incidence was 2.33% (95% CI 2.24-2.43) for boys and 3.77% (95% CI 3.64-3.90) for girls. The pre-pubertal male preponderance was also significant for depressive disorders (F32-F33, p = 0.00144) and anxiety disorders (F40-F42, F93, p < 0.00001) separately.Conclusions Emotional disorders seem to display a male preponderance before the age of 12 years and a female preponderance thereafter. Studies exploring this gender-age interaction are needed. Still, the results question the general assumption that females throughout the lifespan are more at risk for emotional disorders than males.
    Psychological Medicine 08/2014; 45(04):1-11. DOI:10.1017/S0033291714001901 · 5.43 Impact Factor
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