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Signs of ADHD in Women

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can look different in women compared to men. The stereotypical symptoms of ADHD, like hyperactivity and impulsivity, are more commonly observed in men, and this means that women are often underdiagnosed with ADHD. However, ADHD occurs almost equally for both men and women, even if it can manifest differently in women. Understanding the symptoms of ADHD in women can make a big difference in getting the right diagnosis and treatment.

Our ADHD treatment services help men and women both find ways to manage symptoms, focus better, and succeed in daily life. Call Columbia Associates at 703.682.8208 today to get started.

What Does ADHD Look Like in Women?

While the symptoms of ADHD may manifest differently in women, they are no less impactful. Some common differences between men and women with ADHD include:

  • Difficulty with organization and time management – Women with ADHD may struggle to keep track of schedules and deadlines, leading to missed appointments or unfinished tasks.
  • Struggles with perfectionism – Women with ADHD may feel intense pressure to perform perfectly, leading to anxiety and self-esteem issues.
  • Internalized symptoms – Instead of displaying outward hyperactivity, women with ADHD may experience restlessness and agitation internally.
  • Social challenges – Women with ADHD may have difficulty maintaining friendships or navigating social situations due to impulsivity and trouble reading social cues.
  • Emotional regulation – Women with ADHD may experience heightened emotional sensitivity and struggle to manage intense emotions.

These differences in symptoms can often lead to misdiagnosis or lack of diagnosis altogether. Many women with ADHD are labeled as “lazy,” “scatterbrained,” or “overly emotional” instead of receiving the proper support and treatment for their condition.

Getting an ADHD Diagnosis

Underdiagnosis happens when healthcare professionals are not aware of the different ways ADHD can manifest in women. This leads to many women living with undiagnosed and untreated ADHD. Left untreated, ADHD can cause significant challenges, like difficulties with work, relationships, and self-esteem.

If you suspect you may have ADHD, it’s important to seek out a comprehensive evaluation from a qualified healthcare professional. This can include a thorough medical history, physical exam, and psychological assessments.

Managing ADHD Symptoms in Women

While there is no cure for ADHD, symptoms can be managed with a combination of medication, therapy, and lifestyle changes. Ways to manage ADHD symptoms in women include:

  • Working with a therapist – Talking to a therapist can help women with ADHD understand their symptoms and develop coping strategies.
  • Developing organizational techniques – Finding ways to stay organized, like using calendars or lists, can help women with ADHD manage their time and responsibilities more effectively.
  • Seeking support from friends and family – Having a strong support system can make a big difference in managing ADHD symptoms. Friends and family can provide emotional support and help with practical tasks.
  • Prioritizing self-care – Women with ADHD may need to prioritize self-care practices, such as exercise, healthy eating, and getting enough sleep, to help manage symptoms.

Medication might also be part of your treatment plan. Stimulant medications, such as Adderall or Ritalin, can help improve focus and attention in women with ADHD. Non-stimulant medications, like Strattera, may also be prescribed to manage symptoms. However, not everyone with ADHD will respond to the same medication or even need medication as part of their treatment plan. It’s important to work closely with a healthcare professional to find the right approach for you.

Reach Out to Columbia Associates for ADHD Treatment

We’re here to support women who have an ADHD diagnosis or who suspect they may have ADHD. For new clients, please click here to schedule an appointment. For existing clients, please click here and find your office location to contact your office directly.