Women are often more vulnerable to the debilitating effects of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) than men. More women suffer from this condition than men. In adults, the risk of developing ADHD increases with the aging and additional factors such as pregnancy, substance abuse, and obesity. Because of these potential risk factors, treatment of ADHD in women must be considered carefully.
Adults are at greater risk of suffering from depression and other emotional problems because of their lack of coping skills and less control over their lives. Self-esteem becomes low when symptoms worsen and can result in depression. Successful treatment of ADHD in women can involve a multi-pronged approach which includes medication management, behavioral therapy, mental conditioning, stress management, and effective life management. This multi-pronged approach is necessary to address both the physical symptoms and the emotional issues that can further exacerbate symptoms.
Many individuals seek help for ADHD in women because they have been previously diagnosed with the disorder or because of concerns about the potential physical complications associated with untreated ADHD. One important issue is the lack of support available from family and friends when a parent trains a child to live on their own. Many women are reluctant to discuss ADHD and childhood trauma openly, so it is not surprising that few are willing to ask for help when it is needed. In addition, self-esteem is low due to the anxiety created by the thought that others are judging them. The lack of support for these individuals can further increase feelings of depression and anxiety and decrease the chances that they will receive the appropriate treatment for ADHD.
The emotional distress caused by untreated ADHD in women may prevent them from functioning normally in their daily lives. One of the most effective ways to reduce symptoms is to provide the support that women seeking treatment need. Creating an open environment where ADHD in women can be discussed is important for reducing emotional reactivity. The increased support that women gain as their health improves can also lead to improved mental health.
The benefits of treatment also extend to the male patients of ADHD. Typically, the symptoms experienced by male patients are overlooked by their physicians. There is a tendency to downplay the problem, which can compound the difficulties faced by both genders. However, when female patients are included in the discussion about ADHD, the possibility of early recovery becomes more realistic. It is no longer seen as unusual for female patients to experience the same symptoms as male patients.
Another reason why treatment for ADHD is beneficial for adult females is that they can begin the therapy earlier in life than their male counterparts. Since the disorder is generally diagnosed in childhood or adolescence, the symptoms may be lessened if identified early. Additionally, women tend to develop their own strategies for coping with symptoms. They may be less likely to react to stimulant medications the way that boys do.
The more recent studies are beginning to show that treatment of ADHD in adult women can be successful. Some of the latest methods used are behavioral replacement therapy and other forms of counseling. A behavioral replacement program simply helps adult women identify and function without their symptoms. The idea is to re-teach them how to cope with their symptoms without using medication. Some of the therapy programs can be very helpful for treating not only the symptoms of ADHD but the negative behaviors that often go along with the condition as well.
Cognitive behavioral therapy, on the other hand, deals with the ways in which one can learn to control and even overcome the symptoms of ADHD. It does not treat the disorder itself, but rather the way in which people react to it. This type of treatment program has been shown to be as effective as the more traditional stimulant medications. If you are a woman struggling to deal with the symptoms of ADHD, it may be time to think about looking into the alternative forms of treatment that are available. Not only will you find that the treatment program is easier to follow, you may also find that you will feel better when you put the treatment into practice.