When you think of a person with hyperactivity disorder and attention deficit (ADHD), is likely to imagine a restless child on his desk. It is usually considered a “disorder boy,” but in reality that affects girls alike, if different. In fact, according to a new study, girls with ADHD are more likely than those without the disorder to develop other problems – not only anxiety and depression, which are often diagnosed with ADHD, behavioral disorders, but less known.
In an article published in the journal Pediatrics this month, researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles, analyzed data from 18 previous studies; Overall, this provided them with data for 1,997 participants age 18, about 40 percent of whom had been diagnosed with ADHD. According to Science Daily, most of the original studies focused on comparing girls and children with ADHD, but researchers at the UCLA took a different approach. When girls with and without the disease were compared with each other, the researchers found that people with ADHD were more likely to have been diagnosed with other disorders.
Nearly 38 percent of girls with ADHD met the criteria for an anxiety disorder, while only 14 percent of girls without the disorder met the same criteria. About three percent of girls without ADHD were diagnosed with depression, compared to 10 percent of people with ADHD. Given the well-established relationship between ADHD and both of these disorders, these findings are not exactly surprising, but here’s the interesting part. The greatest differences were observed actually two behavioral disorders, conduct disorder and oppositional defiant disorder (ODD).
Only five percent of girls without ADHD had been diagnosed withODD, a disorder characterized by anger, hostility, and problems with authority figures, but that number jumped to 42 percent in girls with ADHD . In the same vein, less than one percent of girls without ADHD had been diagnosed with conduct disorder, similar to ODD disorder but with more aggressive symptoms, but nearly 13 percent of people with ADHD had been diagnosed.
Lead author Irene Tung noted that the results may have seemed less surprising that the study had looked at behavioral disorders in children. “People tend to thinof girls as having greater risk of depression and anxiety disorders, and children being more likely to have behavioral problems, but we realized that ADHD for girls substantially increases the risk of these disorders behavior, “he said in the journal science. ADHD has also been shown to increase the risk of substance abuse in the future.
For years, ADHD was seen as the territory of hyperactive children, but research indicates that every time is just as likely to occur in girls. According to the Centers for Disease Control, children are diagnosed more frequently, but this may be because their symptoms are more obvious. Dr. Patricia Quinn Child Mind Institute that girls tend to be less hyperactive – less anxiety and daydreaming. “People young children bouncing off the walls and imagines think: That’s what it looks like ADHD and if this girl does not seem so she does not have ADHD,” said the Institute
When research focuses primarily on children and men, a large part of the population is taken into account, and this can have devastating consequences. Women often are taken less seriously by doctors, despite the stereotype, research has shown ADHD has a huge impact on physical and mental health of women. According to a study published earlier this year, women with ADHD are more likely to report chronic pain, past abuse, and severe poverty, and are more likely to have considered suicide. ADHD has also been associated with an increased risk of disorders, which tend to affect women disproportionately compared to men eating.
On the positive side, the UCLA study indicates that it is paying more attention to ADHD in girls – hopefully the trend continues