Recent research has shown that children who are young relative to the other kids in their school classes are more likely to be diagnosed and treated for ADHD. This is presumably because they are younger, less well socialized and more childish than their classmates. That childishness can be problematic so they are singled out by teachers and sent down that path toward mind bending pharmaceuticals.
Last weekend's seminar supported my impression that ADHD may be a low dopamine state, either due to decreased levels of the neurotransmitter or decreased receptor activity or numbers. It also supported my impression that low dopamine can follow from childhood trauma. We all know how vicious kids can be, so just being the youngest may constitute trauma. We also know that low status primates within a group have lower serotonin levels.
I personally know two adult humans who are beneficially treated for their ADHD with ritalin. Ritalin's mechanism of action is unknown, but it is thought to influence several neurotransmitters, most especially dopamine. Some texts say it is a dopamine and serotonin reuptake inhibitor.
My question is this: How does being a younger, smaller and lower status individual in a group of mammals affect your dopamine function? And what IS the relationship of dopamine function to ADHD?