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Girls need proper ADHD diagnosis

Eloise Ahl ’21

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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a condition that affects all ages and both genders. It is more commonly diagnosed in kids aged four through 17, mainly because it becomes noticeable in learning environments rather than at home.

But even though both genders can develop ADHD, the disorder is often harder to recognize in  girls

11 percent of all school-aged children have been diagnosed with ADHD, According to Fox News, but the  majority of children that make up that figure are boys. In fact, during an average lifetime, 12.9 percent of all men will be diagnosed with ADHD, whilst only 4.9 percent of women will be diagnosed. While some might conclude that these differences in percentages indicate that boys are more susceptible to developing ADHD than girls, in reality, boys are just three times more likely to get diagnosed than girls, according to the A.D.D. Resource Center.

Boys may be diagnosed more because they are more apt to show the textbook symptoms of ADHD, whereas girls exhibit more unconventional symptoms that tend to cause problems in social situations. According to Very Well Mind and Understood, symptoms exemplified in a female patient may consist of forgetfulness, poor time management, impulsivity and difficulty listening, among others.

In a school like Staples, this is not an ideal situation considering the work demand is so high and it is easy to quickly fall behind. Furthermore, these symptoms may come off as extremely rude and unfriendly to many people as well. Instead of recognizing these behaviors as symptoms of ADHD, people assume it is a personality problem rather than a focus problem.

Alternatively, Amen Clinics suggest that psychiatrists may diagnose these kinds of symptoms as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). This is problematic because these people are not only getting improper treatment, but also not getting their illnesses taken care of.

Each high school is different, but some of the traits every high school shares is the immense amount of work with which students are burdened. There is so much pressure to succeed, especially in a town like Westport. If girls are not getting the proper treatment for their ADHD, it adds more stress and confusion. In addition, if they are not getting proper treatment at school, teachers are unable to justify the way a child acts and failing grades will be the result.

There needs to be more awareness surrounding ADHD, and the symptoms of ADHD in girls should be more known and widespread.

 

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