Females are less likely to be diagnosed with ADHD, but it is important to recognize that commonly accepted prevalence rates (that there are 4 males with ADHD to every 1 female) may not be accurate. Several factors can influence whether or not an individual is tested for the condition. For example, ADHD boys tend to exhibit more disruptive behaviors in a classroom setting when compared to girls and school personnel may be more inclined to refer boys to be evaluated.
Factors Affecting the Diagnosis
Females are less likely to demonstrate significant hyperactivity and their symptoms of inattention may not be plainly evident to others. Also, some experts have suggested that the socio-cultural gender differences may be a factor. As females may be more likely to conform to societal norms and modulate their behavior based on what is expected, the need for assessment and intervention may not be obvious.
The Importance of Thorough Testing
Psychological testing can include measures which gather information using a variety of methods and perspectives. A comprehensive testing evaluation (one that includes a variety of measures and a thorough clinical history) is especially crucial to understand the presence and true impact of an individual’s symptoms.