15% of children in Saudi Arabia suffer from ADHD, says expert
Some 15 percent of Saudi children suffer from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) compared with the world averages of five to 10 percent, local media said.
Girls are more vulnerable to developing this disorder than boys, with a four-to-one ratio, Amal Al-Awami, a pediatric specialist and member of the Saudi Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Society (AFTA) in the Eastern Province, told a local daily.
Experts have declared that treatment and management techniques for this disorder have not been properly addressed.
Others have highlighted the strain such a disorder may have on marriages, where many, oblivious to the presence of this disorder, erroneously believe their children are fundamentally naughty or ill-raised.
ADHD patients suffer from anxiety, depression and repeated discussions on similar topics, said Al-Awami in the presence of several physicians, relatives of ADHD patients, businessmen and other dignitaries during a Ramadan function.
Salman Al-Jashi, AFTA Society supervisor in the Eastern Province, announced that the society has signed a partnership deal with the Ministry of Education aimed at highlighting techniques on how to deal with ADHD-affected students.
A training plan has been devised for teachers and student guides through educational kits and awareness programs for parents and teachers on how to deal with ADHD-affected students, he said.
A study published earlier this year said an estimated 1.6 million Saudi children suffer from ADHD, with only 40 specialist doctors available to treat them.