Impulsivity, hyperactivity and inattention are classical traits one can find in children with ADD. Normal children do often manifest impulsive, hyperactive or inattentive traits; however, children with ADD tend to exhibit these traits more often and more severely. A child exhibiting six or more symptoms of ADD for about half a year or more and to a degree that is more severe compared to other children of their age are usually diagnosed with ADD.

For those children exhibiting signs of inattentiveness, they may:

Have difficulties following instructions
Not be as fast processing information as accurately and as quickly as others
Move slowly, become easily confused and daydream
Not listen when spoken to
Often lose things (assignments, toys, pencils, etc.) or have difficulty turning on or completing assignments and homework.
Have problems paying attention, organizing and learning to finish a task or learning something new.
Become bored with a task unless the activity really interests them
Have problems concentrating on one thing
Often transfer from one activity to another and often forget things, miss details and become easily distracted

Hyperactive children, on the other hand may exhibit symptoms like these:

Have problem doing activities or tasks that are quiet
Are often always in motion
Have problems sitting still during story, school and dinner time
Run around playing or touching everything and anything they can see
Talk continuously
Squirm and fidget while they are seated

Children showing signs and symptoms of impulsivity often:

Usually interrupt other children’s or people’s activities or conversations
Find it very hard to wait for their turn in games or wait for things they want
Act without thinking or without any regard to the consequences, manifest what they feel without restraint and freely say things that are inappropriate

Oftentimes ADD is mistaken for another condition

Teachers and parents may not realize that a child has ADD because the child tends to less likely act out or is always quiet. The child can just sit silently looking as if he/she is doing something but may not necessarily be paying attention to what he/she is doing. The child can have a good relationship with other children as opposed to other children with ADD of other subtypes who usually experience problems getting along with other children. A child with the inattentive type of ADD is not the only type whose condition is often not viewed as ADD. People may also deem that children with the impulsive and hyperactive subtypes do not have ADD but instead may be suffering from disciplinary or emotional problems.

Steven Goldfarb, L.Ac. is a board certified and licensed acupuncturist and the founder of Goldfarb Chiropractic and Acupuncture Center in West Orange, NJ.