Experts say most of the ADHD research to date has been conducted on boys. Recently, the first national survey to highlight the gender differences was released to the public. And it had some surprising results.
The ADHD study suggested girls with the disorder are more likely to be misdiagnosed with depression than boys.
Dr. Steve Evans is an associate professor of psychology at JMU. He has experience working with children with ADHD. He says, "The boys tend to be the most disruptive of those with ADHD than girls with ADHD, and so the boys are much more likely, especially if they are demonstrating disruptive behavior, to be identified."
The girls are often less rebellious and less defiant than boys who have the disorder, so it can sometimes be difficult to classify. Dr. Evans says, "It can get confusing when you are looking at a girl who is presenting these problems. Whether these problems are related to depression or whether these problems are related to ADHD."
Evans also said the classroom is where the most noticeable or hyperactive signs of the disorder are usually picked up. He adds, "It expects them to be able to sit and pay attention and complete work independently and to get along with a group of people and these are areas that these kids have a lot of trouble with and so teachers often first notice why these children are having problems and get them referred and evaluated."
But researchers say hyperactive girls are often seen as "tomboys" or "daydreamers", not necessarily as "troublemakers." Making ADHD easily undetected into adulthood. Dr. Evans continues, "It's not just a disorder of childhood. As children with ADHD get older, they continue to have these problems and impairment through adulthood."
If you think your child may be suffering from ADHD, contact a physician.
whsv.com Extended Web Coverage
Who Has ADHD?
What is ADHD?
Source: www.add.org (Attention Deficit Disorder Association Web site) contributed to this report.