In recent years, there has been more attention paid to the gender gap that exists in medical research. Traditionally, the majority of medical testing has focused on men’s health. For example, as the BU Today website reported, “Medical research in many areas, including cardiovascular disease (which kills more women than men), often includes few women subjects.”
Unfortunately, a gender gap definitely exists in ADHD research. “Knowledge of ADHD in women at this time is extremely limited as few studies have been conducted on this population,” Children and Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (CHADD), a national nonprofit organization providing education, advocacy and support for individuals with ADHD, says. “Women have only recently begun to be diagnosed and treated for ADHD, and today, most of what we know about this population is based on the clinical experience of mental health professionals who have specialized in treating women.”
Dr. George Sachs, one of the leading ADHD doctors in New York, is among the mental health professionals who recognize that ADHD in women and girls often goes undiagnosed. He also understands that the symptoms will present differently in women and girls than in men and boys. At the Sachs Center, this understanding offers hope to women who have had limited options in the past.
Currently, women with undiagnosed ADD/ADHD are often being treated for emotionally based psychiatric illnesses like anxiety and depression. They may be prescribed an antidepressant, when in fact, what they need to move forward and begin living the life they were meant to live is ADHD medication.
ADD in Adult Women and Girls
According to CHADD, women are often able to correctly diagnose their own ADD/ADHD after their child has been diagnosed with the disorder. “As she learns more about ADHD, she begins to see many similar patterns in herself,” the organization says on its website.
In some women, ADD results in many of the same symptoms that beset men. “Some women seek treatment for ADHD because their lives are out of control―their finances may be in chaos; their paperwork and record-keeping are often poorly managed; they may struggle unsuccessfully to keep up with the demands of their jobs; and they may feel even less able to keep up with the daily tasks of meals, laundry and life management,” CHADD says.
“Other women are more successful in hiding their ADHD, struggling valiantly to keep up with increasingly difficult demands by working into the night and spending their free time trying to ‘get organized.’ But whether a woman’s life is clearly in chaos or whether she is able to hide her struggles, she often describes herself as feeling overwhelmed and exhausted.”
In today’s fast-paced world, it’s not unusual for anyone to feel overwhelmed and exhausted, but if you feel that way all the time, ADHD testing for adults at the Sachs Center might be worth considering.
The Sachs Center offers a full spectrum of services for children, teens and adults on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. Our doctors are specialists inADD/ADHD testing and ADD/ADHD treatment in NYC. Under the leadership of Dr. George Sachs, we take a holistic, person-centered approach to your care. In other words, we look at the big picture and develop a treatment plan that is tailored to your strengths and weaknesses. You are unique, so we believe a customized solution will be far more effective than a one-size-fits-all approach.
Medication can be very helpful when treating ADD in adults, but we also have had good results using neurofeedback for ADHD. We offer psychotherapy and social skill groups, as well as valuable coaching on nutrition and organization.
The first step is ADD testing. If you think you are ready, please call us at 646-807-8900 to schedule an initial evaluation.