Longitudinal studies have revealed that girls with ADHD in childhood often go on to often develop more serious issues such as eating disorders, anxiety, self-injury and depression.
Like McDonald’s parents, Quinn said she looks for an “island of confidence” to help girls.
“We need to prevent a sense of shame and stigma, and loss of self-esteem,” she said. “Girls suffer tremendously.”
“These girls don’t feel smart,” she said.
“Instead, what we need to do is empower them and provide support them,” said Quinn. “And part of that are medications we know work for certain of their issues like attention, focus, concentration and impulsivity.”
She said research shows a combination of strategies that includes both medication and behavioral or cognitive therapy can help girls with their coping skills and self-esteem.
“Not everyone is as talented as [McDonald] and rise to the top,” said Quinn. “We want to help them be successful so that ADHD does not interfere with their pursuits, relationships, academics or career issues.”