While men have historically been more likely to be diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, a recent study shows women have been closing the gap, nearly doubling their number of diagnoses in recent years, according to a study reported by Fox News.
From 2020 to 2022, the number of American women ages 23 to 49 years old diagnosed with ADHD has nearly doubled.
That's according to researchers from Epic Research, a health analytics firm in Verona, Wisconsin, which analyzed data from 3,389,386 patients who were diagnosed with ADHD between 2010 and 2022.
In addition, the ratio of male diagnoses to female diagnoses decreased by nearly five times during the overall 12-year period of the review.
"The ratio of males to females diagnosed with ADHD decreased nearly five-fold during that time, from males being 133% more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than females in 2010 to 28% more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD in 2022," Epic Research stated.
Prescriptions for certain categories of women increased drastically in recent years as well. According to WebMD, between 2020 and 2021, prescriptions rose by over 10% for women 15-44 and men 25-44. However, the largest increase in any category has been women ages 20-24, where prescriptions increased by 19.2%.
ADHD is harder to spot in women and girls, WebMD states.
"There are three main kinds of ADHD: inattentive, hyperactive-impulsive, and combined inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive. The inattentive type is most common in girls. It doesn't always catch the attention of teachers and parents," a medically reviewed fact sheet says.
Adult ADHD can make it hard for women to handle day-to-day stress or keep their jobs reined in. It can also involve struggling to manage finances, complete household tasks, or care for children.
"As women begin careers, have children and juggle other pressures, it may become harder to maintain life with ADHD," said Dr. Joseph Galasso speaking to Fox News.
"They may come to realize that it hasn’t just been stress or anxiety they’ve been dealing with," Galasso continued, adding that patients "might have trouble concentrating at work, have memory problems or struggle to focus, or are just really stressed out."
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 6 million children ages 3-17 have been diagnosed with ADHD in total.
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