According to a new study, nearly 1-in-10 children, ages 7-8, hears disembodied voices on a regular basis, but there is no evidence that this is a signal of impending schizophrenia, according to the scientists.
Uh. That's good to know. However, it does leave unanswered the question, why are they hearing voices?
It is proven that, like dogs, children can hear sounds that adults can't hear. If it's perfectly reasonable that kids can hear a ring tone that adults can't hear, why is it suggestive of possible mental illness that they hear voices that other people can't?
Maybe they really are hearing voices. Did anyone ever consider that possibility?
I suggest an experiment. Give these kids electronic audio recording devices, disguised as event counters, and tell them to press the counter button any time they hear voices. When the button is pressed, the recorder turns on for 60 seconds. After a month, collect the recorders, play back the devices and see if they picked up anything.
Seems a worthwhile experiment if you aren't in the least interested in the future of your scientific career.