The Startling Statistics

The startling statistics are that millions of American children live with diagnosed chronic illnesses.

According to a research paper published in Academic Pediatrics in 2011, at least 54% of American children have a diagnosed chronic condition.

Below are the prevalence statistics of some of the most common illnesses affecting our children:

Millions of American children struggle with what were once termed “psychiatric” disorders: mood disorders, neurobehavioral disorders, developmental delays and learning disabilities:

For every child diagnosed with a chronic illness, there are many more undiagnosed children. There are millions of children with undiagnosed chronic illness.

Many American children are not diagnosed with a particular disease or disorder, but they still show signs of being chronically ill.

Here are just a few signs that a child might be chronically ill:

The most stunning part of this epidemic is that all these seemingly disparate illnesses and disorders may all have the same underlying causes.

What is happening to our children?

Sources & References

American Lung Association. The Impact of Asthma. Accessed 2 Sep 2020.

Bethell, C., et al. A National and State Profile of Leading Health Problems and Health Care Quality for US Children: Key Insurance Disparities and Across-State Variations. Academic Pediatrics, May–June 2011, Volume 11, Issue 3, Supplement, p. S22–S33.

Bitsko, R.H., et al. Epidemiology and Impact of Health Care Provider-Diagnosed Anxiety and Depression Among US Children. J Dev Behav Pediatr. 2018 Apr 24.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Data and Statistics on Children’s Mental Health. Accessed 2 Sep 2020.

Gupta, R.S., et al. The Public Health Impact of Parent-Reported Childhood Food Allergies in the United States. Pediatrics. 2018 Dec;142(6). pii: e20181235.

Perrin, J., et al. The Increase of Childhood Chronic Conditions in the United States. JAMA. 2007;297(24):2755-2759.

Weitzman, Carol. How Can We Support Children and Families With Information Gleaned From Developmental Screening? Pediatrics. 2019 Nov 14. pii: e20192936.

Whitney, D.G., et al. US National and State-Level Prevalence of Mental Health Disorders and Disparities of Mental Health Care Use in Children. JAMA Pediatr. 2019 Feb 11.

Zablotsky, B., et al. Estimated Prevalence of Children With Diagnosed Developmental Disabilities in the United States, 2014–2016. National Center for Health Statistics. NCHS Data Brief, No. 291, Nov 2017.


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