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Hyperactivity and Impulsivity
As defined today, ADD does not have a hyperactive or impulsivity component. For more information about these symptoms, see the full eMedTV article on ADHD Symptoms.
There are three patterns of behavior that indicate ADD. People with ADD may show several ADD symptoms of being consistently inattentive. They may also show ADHD symptoms of being hyperactive and impulsive far more than others of their age. Or they may show all three types of behavior.
This means there are three different subtypes of ADHD. Professionals recognize these different subtypes based on the symptoms the person has. These ADHD types are:
- Predominantly hyperactive-impulsive type (the person does not show significant inattention)
- Predominantly inattentive type (the person does not show significant hyperactive-impulsive behavior)
- Combined type (the person displays both inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive symptoms).
Progression of Symptoms
Symptoms of ADD appear over the course of many months, often with the ADHD symptoms of impulsiveness and hyperactivity preceding those of inattention, which may not emerge for a year or more.
Different ADD symptoms may appear in different settings, depending on the demands the situation may pose for the child's self-control. A child who "can't sit still" or is otherwise disruptive will be noticeable in school, but the inattentive daydreamer may be overlooked. The impulsive child who acts before thinking may be considered just a "discipline problem," while the child who is passive or sluggish may be viewed as merely unmotivated. Yet both may have different types of ADD.