Recently, it’s been discovered that the fastest-growing group of persons to be diagnosed with ADHD is women – mothers in particular. In some ways, female ADHD is overshadowed by male ADHD. Generally, boys are three times more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD as girls. However, this doesn’t eliminate the fact that women still do have ADHD. It is estimated that about 50 to 70 percent of women with ADHD are undiagnosed. So, why are Symptoms of ADHD in women not easily diagnosed? The answer to that question rests on the fact that men and women usually have different kinds of ADHD. However, it’s crucial to point out that it’s easier now than it was before to diagnose women with ADHD. Buckinghamshire and Milton Keynes ADHD Centre are home to some of the best healthcare professionals that can help diagnose ADHD symptoms in women and provide the best care for people with ADHD.
Understanding the Difference Between ADHD in Male & Female
Male ADHD tends to be “Hyperactive ADHD” which is characterised by their inability to sit still. It also causes them to interrupt conversations, embark on risky behaviours, talk a lot, and have intense emotional reactions.
On the other hand, female ADHD tends to be “Inattentive Type ADHD”, which used to be commonly known as ADD. Some of the ADHD in women symptoms are not so obvious like their male counterparts. For instance, the individuals affected may appear to be paying attention but the truth is that their mind is elsewhere. This kind of ADHD is often characterised by daydreaming, being disorganised, being withdrawn, finding it difficult to make decisions or requiring a longer time to process information. Another reason why common ADHD symptoms in women are not easily diagnosed is that most research on ADHD were done in the 70’s and they focused mainly on young, white males having hyperactive tendencies.
Unfortunately, female ADHD often presents quite differently to male. So, it’s likely that less women are diagnosed simply because people are not checking some of the common ADHD symptoms in women. Being able to identify some of the symptoms below would give you an idea of whether you have ADHD in women symptoms or not. Also, you can share the results with your mental health professional since a health professional is the one only officially qualified to diagnose the common symptoms of ADHD in women.
So, going through these should in no way serve to diagnose ADHD or replace the care of a healthcare professional. It’s only meant to serve as a guide and to inform you how it affects and seek professional ADHD medication in women as early as possible.
Common ADHD Symptoms in Women
Depression and anxiety
One of the challenges of having ADHD is that it comes with co-morbidity – a second health condition which is as a result of the ADHD. The constant feeling of being overwhelmed, and socially isolated can cause women with ADHD to have low self-esteem, anxiety and depression. It’s also believed that 50 percent of people with ADHD actually have a co-morbidity and anxiety happens to be the most common.
Women having ADHD are likely going to feel “on the brink” like something else would push them over the edge and they’re hardly coping. You just have this feeling of drowning in paper. In your car, at home, at work or even in your purse. You have this uneasy feeling that forgotten projects or unpaid bills are somewhere under the paper.
Women are typically very resourceful and good at adapting and most women struggling with ADHD have over the years successfully developed coping mechanisms that help them to handle the issues that ADHD brings with it. However, this often causes them to feel like they are always “acting” at being competent. While some women are able to “hold it together” in their workplace, they might have the feeling that things are falling apart at home.
Most times, women with ADHD find it hard to feel they have a lot in common with other people – they have the feeling that they just don’t fit in. This ends up causing them to isolate themselves. Since social rules appear too complicated, women with ADHD may find friendships difficult to manage.
Although the level of impulsive behaviour in women with ADHD might be less than those with “hyperactive” ADHD, they usually end up eating or shopping impulsively. Although you may feel better at the moment after a shopping trip, you usually feel regret when the credit card bill arrives.
Women with inattentive ADHD frequently forget birthdays, where they kept their smartphone or keys and appointments.