ADHD in Teenage Girls

Tess Thompson

For a long time doctors believed that children can outgrow ADHD, especially with the help of ADHD treatments. However, it has been established now that this situation can persist through adulthood. This is true especially in the case of girls because ADHD can be undiagnosed for a long time. It has been found that girls are normally afflicted with inattentive type ADHD which is really difficult to diagnose because such children are not overtly active. Also, since girls normally put in extra effort to hide their academic difficulties, correct diagnosis becomes even more difficult. However, parents should look out for certain behaviors that may give an indication of ADHD. These are general untidiness, being easily distracted, being late for school regularly, meeting deadlines at the last minute and always coming up with excuses if a task has not been completed.

Being impulsive is a major problem for teenage girls with ADHD. Teenage is a phase in life that brings in many challenges due to peer pressure, parental expectations and societal norms. And if a teenager is afflicted with ADHD, it can be the lethal combination that can prove to be devastating for the individual. A study conducted by Harvard Medical School reported that teenage girls who have ADHD have a higher risk of mental illness by the age of seventeen.

ADHD in teenage girls can make the teenage problems more intense. Peer acceptance is very important for teenagers and this is especially true for girls. With ADHD, this may become intense and possibly lead to self-destructive behavior. It can also lead to low self-esteem and depression that can have a long lasting effect. Teenage girls are under intense social pressure to be feminine and well groomed. However, this is in direct contrast to the behavior induced by ADHD and this can have disastrous repercussions on the personality. Academic pressure in schools has increased manifold and academics requires a lot of persistence and concentration on part of the students. Since teenage girls with ADHD cannot do this, they normally are declared as academically inferior. It has also been proven through scientific studies that teenage girls with ADHD are at a greater risk for teenage pregnancy than other girls. This is possible because teenage girls with ADHD are low on self esteem and as an escape route, may seek sexual attention. Due to impulsive nature and poor planning, these girls are prone to unprotected sex and therefore, become pregnant.

The medical experts point out the need for more research on ADHD in girls, including treatment options like natural medicine for ADHD and natural remedies for ADHD. It is estimated that ninety nine percent of childhood ADHD research is conducted on boys. Also, since girls in the early years of their lives are not as disruptive as boys, this condition normally goes unnoticed and hence has not been the focus of the medical fraternity. Both the parents and medical experts need to sit up and take notice and take adequate action to increase awareness among people about the problem.

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