ADHD in Young Girls

When it comes to ADHD and how to control anger, it is known that this is a problem among boys. However, there are some girls who are struggling with ADHD as well. However, because they are girls, they aren’t always seen in the same light and aren’t getting the same treatment. There are a couple of things that you should know about ADHD in young girls so that you understand how this problem could be affecting them as well. Here is some vital information about girls and ADHD that every parent of an ADHD girl should know about:

They often don’t have the behavior problems like with boys

One of the main reasons why boys are often diagnosed with ADHD as opposed to girls is because the boys have more behavioral disorders than girls. What’s more, they struggle more with how to control anger.

“For many girls with ADHD, paying attention to the task at hand is their biggest challenge. They can get distracted by external events or drift off into a world of their own. For example, a bird outside a classroom window may take attention away from something more important in their environment, like a teacher announcing the date of an upcoming exam,” shares Joel Forman, MD, an associate professor of pediatrics and environmental medicine and public health at Mount Sinai School of Medicine.

Put simply, this means that boys have far more problems with behavior and controlling themselves than with girls. Most often, you will have more trouble controlling a boy with ADHD than a girl. This seems to be the key reason why people claim that more boys than girls are affected with ADHD as it is more obvious. As a result, most girls are going untreated with the disease.

Girls can be affected more with ADHD than boys

The problem is that even if boys with ADHD display more behavioral problems, girls are more often far more affected personally and they might require online therapy for assistance.

This means that girls have more problems like low self-esteem, are more anxious, and are struggling more with depression. This can really have a seriously negative effect on girls, especially if it is left untreated and they don’t receive the right medication. One of the first signs of ADHD in girls is when a girl becomes somewhat withdrawn, becoming a loner or dreamer. And, because this isn’t a typical symptom of ADHD, girls go without the right diagnosis and struggle with anxiety, depression, and low self-esteem that ADHD comes with.

“If the disorder is untreated, they may also experience a drop in grades or an inability to manage friendships. This can lead to low self-esteem. Low self-esteem is linked to bigger issues, such as depression, anxiety, and eating disorders,” writes Timothy K. Legg, PhD, PMHNP-BC, a licensed psychologist and a board-certified geritric and psychiatric mental health nurse practitioner.

Treatment for girls

Portrait of young exhausted woman screaming while suffering from headache and cold in kitchen

The treatment for ADHD girls is basically the same as it is for boys and online therapy can help both boys and girls. The right type of drug is prescribed and monitored to see if there is a difference. There is medication that will assist girls that don’t have the behavioral problems as much as the boys and there is a medication that will assist the girls with any anxiety and depression comes from suffering from ADHD.

The one thing about ADHD in girls is that they also need to be monitored really carefully, because suicide is a distinct possibility if anxiety and depression aren’t under control.

“Many teens with ADHD experience other difficulties. Research shows high levels of comorbidity between ADHD and mood disorders, anxiety disorders, and conduct disorder. One study found that adolescent females with ADHD have a 2.5 times higher risk of major depression than female adolescents without ADHD,” reveals Katie Hurley, LCSW, a private therapist who provides child and adolescent psychotherapy, family therapy, and parent education.

These are a couple of things that you should know about ADHD and girls. Just because there aren’t as many girls diagnosed with ADHD, it doesn’t mean that this is a disease that is more likely to affect boys. ADHD  also affects girls in equal measures, just on a different level. They are often affected more emotionally and can become withdrawn, whereas boys tend to display more behavioral problems. And, this is also why people think that girls are not be affected when they aren’t getting the right treatment. However, this isn’t true at all. Girls can be just as affected by ADHD as boys—just in different ways—and online therapy is something that might be of help to thousands of girls suffering in silence with ADHD.