A recent study from Rutgers has found that exposure to common pesticides called pyrethoid pesticides– which have been officially declared as “safe”–may lead to an increase in ADHD risk in young children.
The research was 2-pronged. First, the researchers studied mice and found that when mice were exposed to a type of pyrethoid pesticide called deltamethrin in utero and through lactation, they later exhibited features of ADHD and were found to have faulty dopamine signaling processes in the brain. Then, as a secondary measure, the researchers studied human data from questionnaires conducted with parents and children. In their analysis of the data, they found that the kids with elevated levels of the pesticide metabolites were more than twice as likely to be diagnosed with ADHD.
Deltamethrin and other pyrethoid pesticides are commonly and widely used in lawn care, golf courses, and crops. Researchers caution that pregnant women and young children may be most susceptible to the negative effects of exposure because their bodies metabolize the chemicals more slowly.
You can see an abstract of the study at The Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology.