What is it about?

ADHD represents the most commonly diagnosed disorder in children and it frequently co-occurs with other developmental disorders. What impact does ADHD have on children's language impairments? The answer to this question has direct implications for both theory and clinical practice. In this study, the grammatical and verbal memory abilities of children with specific language impairment (SLI) and children with co-occurring ADHD+LI were compared. Results indicated that the presence of ADHD did not make children's language impairments worse (SLI = ADHD+LI).

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Why is it important?

Comorbidity is an important but relatively poorly understood aspect of developmental language impairments. In this study, the symptoms of SLI were of the same type and severity as those associated with ADHD+LI. This outcome represents a direct challenge to attention-deficit/executive function theories of language impairment. An additional implication is that treatments designed to target these domains can be expected to be less effective for children with LI than those targeting their language skills directly.

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This page is a summary of: Consequences of Co-Occurring Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder on Children's Language Impairments, Language Speech and Hearing Services in Schools, April 2015, American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA), DOI: 10.1044/2014_lshss-14-0045.
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