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Self-esteem in children with attention and/or learning deficits: the importance of gender
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
Stockholm University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Psychology.
2008 (English)In: Acta Paediatrica, ISSN 0803-5253, Vol. 97, no 8, 1125-1130 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Objective: Our objective was to analyze self-esteem in children within a spectrum of attention disorders, that is, besides attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), also children with subthreshold ADHD and even milder attention deficits and/or learning problems.

Methods: From a population-based group of 10–11-year-old children in a Swedish municipality those with ADHD/subthreshold ADHD (n = 30) and those with milder attention and/or learning problems (n = 64) were targeted for the study. The children completed the 'I think I am' scale, reflecting physical appearance, scholastic competence, mental well-being, relationships to parents and to others and global self-esteem. Data from boys and girls were compared and related to the parents' and teachers' ratings on the two dimensions of the Conners' 10-item questionnaire (impulsive-restless behaviour and emotional lability) and to the children's cognitive levels.

Results: Significant gender differences were found, girls reporting lower self-esteem concerning mental well-being and poorer relationships with parents and peers. However, children with ADHD/subthreshold ADHD did not report significantly lower global self-esteem when compared to a reference population.

Conclusion: Self-esteem in children with attention, behaviour and/or learning problems has to be carefully evaluated, especially in girls, and measures are needed to prevent a trajectory towards adolescent psychopathology.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2008. Vol. 97, no 8, 1125-1130 p.
Keyword [en]
ADHD, attention spectrum disorders, gender, learning problems, self-esteem
National Category
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-16621DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1651-2227.2008.00894.xISI: 000257700400027OAI: diva2:183141
The study was partly financed by the Centre for Competence in Treatment and Care (CKVO), based at Stockholm University.Available from: 2008-12-19 Created: 2008-12-19 Last updated: 2011-01-10Bibliographically approved

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Ek, UllaWesterlund, Joakim
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