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What Is ADHD And Hyperactivity?

ADHD and hyperactivity are often mislabeled.

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adhd and hyperactivity

ADHD relates to a wide spectrum of behaviours called Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.

The disorder is often referred to as ADHD or ADD by teachers and other professionals, which can make it confusing when trying to assess your child's specific challenges in regards to the ADHD spectrum.

Not all children with ADHD exhibit the same behaviours.

Although it is often assumed that ADHD and hyperactivity go hand in hand, the presence of hyperactivity is not always found in children with ADHD.

Although hyperactivity and ADHD are associated in some types of ADHD, that is not the case for others.

There are actually three subtypes of ADHD which are...

  • ADHD Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Type
  • ADHD Predominantly Inattentive Type
  • ADHD Predominantly Combined Type

Addressing ADHD And Hyperactivity

It should not be assumed that a child with ADHD is also hyperactive.

A child who has ADHD Inattentive Type will have challenges staying focused and concentrating, but they will show very little signs or no signs at all of hyperactivity.

Mislabeling an ADHD child as hyperactive can result in mistreatment, and can have adverse affects on your child's self esteem.

Defining Hyperactivity And ADHD

The most visible and identifiable sign of ADHD is excessive activity, or hyperactivity.

Hyperactivity should not be confused with the activity level of an active energetic child.

Hyperactivity and ADHD is considered if your child shows excessively active behaviour that is not age appropriate.

This excessive behaviour includes excessive talking, squirming, inability to stay seated, running at times not considered appropriate and constant climbing on and jumping off things inappropriately; such as furniture.

The Relation of Impulsivity With Hyperactivity And ADHD

A child who is diagnosed with ADHD Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive type deals not only with hyperactivity but also with impulsivity.

Impulsivity refers to a child acting before thinking about the consequences.

The impulsive child has great difficulty waiting for his turn and waiting to speak.

They often interrupt conversations, disrupt other children's play activities and speak out and answer questions inappropriately.

Because the impulsive child acts before thinking, they can also put themselves in unsafe situations.

The impulsive child might dart into the street without thinking to look for cars, or may jump off a high incline without thinking that the fall may cause serious injuries.

Associated Features of Hyperactivity and ADHD

Children with hyperactive ADHD also portray a number of other associated behaviours such as a low frustration tolerance, temper tantrums and difficulty following rules.

Identifying your child's specific behaviours in regards to the ADHD spectrum can allow for the best possible treatment for your child.

Click here to learn more about Parent's Guide to Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in Children


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