Community knowledge and beliefs about ADHD

Gilmore, Linda (2010) Community knowledge and beliefs about ADHD. Australian Educational and Developmental Psychologist, 27(1), pp. 20-30.

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Accurate knowledge and positive attitudes within the community are important for the effective diagnosis, treatment and support of people with ADHD. Most previous research about knowledge and attitudes has focused only on professional groups and parents of children with ADHD. The aim of this study was to explore knowledge about ADHD characteristics and causes, and attitudes towards issues such as medication in the general population. Six hundred and forty-five members of the Australian community, all of whom were parents, completed a questionnaire. The findings showed that the core features of ADHD were well-known, but there were misconceptions and considerable uncertainty about many aspects. Most respondents failed to recognise the genetic basis of the disorder and its potentially lifelong nature. Fathers were less knowledgeable than mothers. Although most participants believed that ADHD is a genuine disorder and recognised the benefits of medication, the majority believed that it is diagnosed too frequently and that medication is prescribed too readily. The study concluded that, in many respects, the public is not well-informed about ADHD and suggested that the media may have an important role in enhancing community awareness of the disorder through responsible, sensitive and accurate reporting.

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6 citations in Scopus
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ID Code: 33662
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, ADHD, community knowledge, community beliefs, public attitudes
ISSN: 0816-5122
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > EDUCATION (130000) > SPECIALIST STUDIES IN EDUCATION (130300) > Special Education and Disability (130312)
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Office of Education Research
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Education
Past > Schools > School of Cultural & Language Studies in Education
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2010 Australian Psychological Society
Deposited On: 02 Aug 2010 21:36
Last Modified: 30 Apr 2012 14:10

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