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Journal Article


Flynn MM, Rosen PJ, Reese JS, Slaughter KE, Alacha HF, Olczyk AR. Eur. Child Adolesc. Psychiatry 2021; ePub(ePub): ePub.


(Copyright © 2021, Holtzbrinck Springer Nature Publishing Group)






Parents of children with ADHD typically report higher levels of parenting stress than parents of typically developing children. Children with ADHD display developmentally inappropriate levels of hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention. Some children with ADHD are also prone to particularly high levels of tonic irritability that may explain some of the impairments typically found in ADHD. The present study sought to determine the unique impact of ADHD and tonic irritability on child-related parenting stress domains (e.g., difficult child, parent-child dysfunctional interactions). 145 mothers of children with and without ADHD aged 7-12 years participated in the current study. Mothers completed self-report measures of parenting stress as well as a diagnostic structured interview. Ecological momentary assessment (EMA) was used to assess tonic irritability in an ecological environment. Indirect effects models were specified using PROCESS Model 4. For the parent-child dysfunctional interaction domain, the data were best fit by a model specifying a significant total effect of ADHD that was fully accounted for by an indirect effect through irritability. For the difficult child domain, model testing indicated a significant total effect of ADHD that was partially accounted for by an indirect effect through irritability. The current study adds support to the growing body of literature acknowledging the role of tonic irritability in children with ADHD. Furthermore, the results provide novel insight in the complex relation of irritability, child ADHD, and domains of parenting stress.

Language: en


Children; Parenting; Stress; ADHD; Irritability


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