Title: Explaining the Prospective Association of Positive and Negative Parenting Behaviors and Child ADHD Symptoms: Pathways Through Child Executive Function and Reward Responsivity
Legend: ADHD symptoms were a latent construct as measured via two observed variables (Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children and Vanderbilt Assessment Scale). The figure shows that negative parenting indirectly influenced Wave 2 latent ADHD-I symptoms via the effects of Wave 1 executive function (EF). The indirect effect of negative parenting on Wave 2 latent ADHD-H symptoms through the effects of Wave 1 EF was also significant. However, there was no evidence of an indirect effect of negative parenting on Wave 2 latent ADHD-I or ADHD-H through the effects of Wave 1 and Wave 2 reward responsivity (RR).
Citation: Zhang, Q., & Li, J. J. (2022). Explaining the Prospective Association of Positive and Negative Parenting Behaviors and Child ADHD Symptoms: Pathways Through Child Executive Function and Reward Responsivity. Journal of attention disorders, 26(13), 1774–1787. https://doi.org/10.1177/10870547221104079
Abstract: Objective – Parenting behavior is a well-established correlate of offspring ADHD. However, little is known about how parenting exerts its effects on offspring ADHD symptomatology. We examined whether prospective associations between positive and negative parenting behaviors and child ADHD symptoms are mediated by deficits in child executive function (EF) and reward responsivity (RR). Method – One hundred and thirty-five children with and without ADHD were assessed across two Waves, when children were mean ages 6 and 8 respectively. Children completed tasks on EF, and parents completed questionnaires about their parenting behaviors and their children’s RR and ADHD symptoms. Results – Negative parenting behavior at Wave 1 was indirectly associated with offspring ADHD symptoms at Wave 2 via offspring EF. Conclusion – Individual differences in EF, but not RR, during early childhood may constitute a potential pathway by which negative parenting behaviors exerts its effects on subsequent offspring ADHD symptomatology. Treatment implications are discussed.
About the Lab: The Social and Behavioral Development Lab investigates genetic and environmental factors that contribute to the development of child externalizing disorders (e.g., attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, and conduct disorder). Research in the lab utilizes molecular genetic approaches (e.g., genome-wide association scans, gene-pathway analysis) to advance understanding about the genetic architecture underlying complex developmental phenomena. They also focus on rigorous measurements of early environmental influences as they relate to child behavioral problems, not only for risk factors such as negative parenting and maltreatment, but also for enriched factors such as positive parenting and social support. The goal of this research is to understand how genes and environments independently and interactively influence variation in child social and behavioral development, and to ultimately bridge the substantial gap between genetics/neuroscience and prevention/intervention.
Investigator: James J. Li, PhD