Branches of psychology

Do children share with ADHD and autism neuronal characteristics?

Although the etiology and evolution of ADHD and autism are clearly differentiated, this does not imply that they do not share areas in which both show a certain level of delay with respect to the rest of the classmates, or even that both disorders can be presented of development in the same person. Although environmental theories suggest that social factors may be mediating in the emergence and maintenance of ADHD, the weight of genetics is considered to be greater in the case of autism. Despite the foregoing, children with ADHD or with autism show in addition to the delays inherent in their disorder, a specific shared that is with respect to the area of social development. Although the causes can be considered “external”, in terms of the isolation they can suffer from their peers and the environment where they develop because they do not “understand” or are sensitized to the disorder they suffer, and also do not usually have Knowledge or experience of “How to treat it”. Some research in this regard have sought this minor social performance in the very characteristics of the small, specifically in terms of their brain development is concerned, focusing on the structures involved in what is called as a social brain, But do children share with ADHD and autism neuronal characteristics?

This is what has been tried to find out with a research conducted from the departments of Psychiatry, pediatrics, Molecular Genetics and Biophysical Medicine at the University of Toronto, along with the Department of Psychiatry and genetic medicine at the University of Calgary; The Center for Addictions and Mental health; The Holland Bloorview Children’s Hospital; And the Hospital Dalla Lana (Canada) whose results have been published in February of 2019 in the scientific journal of Psychiatry. The study involved three hundred twelve children with an average of eleven years, of which Forty-four were diagnosed with AD and seventy-seven with autism. All of them were administered a questionnaire for the evaluation of social competencies through Social Communication Questionnaire (SCQ) and Reading the Mind in the Eyes Test (RMET), also carried out a record at neuronal level by resonance Magnetic.

The results indicate that those small ones who obtain lower scores in the social questionnaires regardless of having ADHD or autism show thinner crusts in the lateral regions and the right insula, and reduction in the volume of the ventral striation. Unlike minors with autism or the control group, which also had ADHD significant differences in the right lateral regions involved in social perception.

It should be taken into account that despite having data according to gender has not been analyzed, so it is not possible to know if these differences found affect girls more or less in front of children. Likewise, it is necessary to distinguish between structures involved in the social brain, in terms of the emission of social conduct, which must be adjusted to the circumstances, and the second with respect to social perception, that is to say, socially skilful and Even know how others see you. The study does not find significant differences between minors with autism or ADHD in terms of the issuance of social behavior, showing both ineffective in terms of adjustment to the circumstances of the moment. On the other hand, on social perception there is an overactivation of the areas involved in the case of minors with ADHD which could suppose that these are more “sensitive” to the “negative” opinions of others in terms of their social performance, especially with what Respect to their peers, ie classmates, which can also affect the child’s self-esteem. Aspects that have to be taken into account, not only to know the peculiarities at the neuronal level of the minors with autism or ADHD, if not and especially as far as the intervention is concerned, reinforcing the social skills, both in terms of the emission adjusted to the CIRC Unstancias in both cases, as to social perception and self-esteem in ADHD.

By Dr. Juan Moisés de la Serna

Doctor of Psychology, Master in Neuroscience and Behavioral Biology, Clinical Hypnosis Specialist. Recognized by the International Biographical Center (Cambridge – UK) as one of the top one hundred health professionals in the world in 2010. He also teaches in various national and international universities
Scientific disseminator participating in congresses, conferences and seminars; collaborator in various papers, digital media and radio programs; author of the blog “Advanced Open Learning in Psychology and Neuroscience, and twenty books on diverse subjects.
Currently he conducts research in the field of Big Data applications in healthcare utilizing data from India, United States and Canada, among others, work which he complements with consultancy to technological startups geared towards psychology and personal wellbeing.