Ask The Expert: Are Energy Drinks Okay for Kids?
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Why might some parents think it’s okay to give their children energy drinks?
Parents will say, “Well I use this every day, why can’t they?” and it’s because of their little bodies. Kids are not fully grown, they are [still] developing, and they’re smaller than adults, so it has a greater effect on them. You know, one of the biggest risks of being on a real stimulant for ADD is growth issues.
[And] it doesn’t appear like there’s anything wrong. You can just go into a store and buy it, there’s no black box, there’s no warning. I mean, there’s nothing that says that there could be a potential hazard for you. So why would they think that it’s bad?
Are these drinks okay for kids in moderation?
There is no role [for] these energy drinks in kids. The risk is just too big.
Marcie Beth Schneider, M.D., FAAP, FSAM, founded Greenwich Adolescent Medicine in Greenwich, CT. She is board-certified in pediatrics and adolescent medicine. Dr. Schneider graduated from Brown University and attended medical school at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in the Bronx. She did her pediatric residency training at Montefiore Medical Center in the Bronx and her fellowship training in adolescent medicine at North Shore University Hospital on Long Island.