Published in the Journal of JAMA Psychiatry, findings of a new study suggest that infections that require hospitalisation in childhood can cause mental disorders. Researchers at the Aarhus University stated that infections can lead to an 84 percent increased risk of being diagnosed with any mental disorder and about a 42 percent increased risk of using psychotropic drugs.
“The surprising finding was that the infections in general — and in particular, the less severe infections, those that were treated with anti-infective agents — increased the risk for the majority of mental disorders,” said Ole Kohler-Forsberg, lead researcher of the study. The researchers found associations between any treated infection and increased risk of prescribed medication for various childhood and adolescent mental disorders. The risks mainly included spectrum disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, personality and behaviour disorders, mental retardation, autism spectrum disorders, attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder/conduct disorder, and tic disorders.
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