Rates of disability among children rose more than 16 percent over the past decade — and researchers aren’t totally sure why.
The new data comes from an article in the journal Pediatrics, which charts disability rates among children between 2001 and 2011. In surveys used to figure this out, parents are asked to choose whether 14 different disabilities or limitations (including those that are physical, like birth defects, and those that are mental, including ADHD) affect their children. The rate of disability rose from 68.7 cases per 1,000 children in 2001 to 79.4 cases per 1,000 children in 2011.
While rates of disability are higher among low-income children, although researchers noticed that most of the increase in the past decade is concentrated among higher-income families, especially between 2008 and 2010.