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What is ADHD Inattentive Type and Dose Your Child Have ADHD Without Hyperactivity?

Updated on September 27, 2011

When it comes to adhd inattentive type there are still many people who are confused because of the terms that are used in relation to this very common disorder. This confusion really got underway in the mid 1990's when the disorder's name was officially changed. Ever since then all types of Attention Deficit Disorder are called Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder followed by a comma. After the comma a subtype or category is listed such as:

1. Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Inattentive Type

People who fall in this subtype experience very severe problems as far as being able to maintain their attention span yet they do not experience much or any of those associated with hyperactivity or impulsivity.

2. Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Combined Type

These individuals suffer with inattentiveness as well as hyperactivity and impulsivity.

3. Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Hyperactive/Impulsive Type

Those in this category of ADHD suffer major issues with hyperactivity and impulsivity but they do not struggle with inattention.

These are the official labels for the disorder but despite this there are a great number of doctors and specialists who continue to use both ADD and ADHD interchangeably. Those who have been diagnosed with adhd inattentive type will have displayed symptoms that are in line with those outlined in the diagnostic manual of the APA (American Psychiatric Association). In this category or subtype of ADHD there are nine symptoms and while everyone has some difficulty with some of the symptoms mentioned at least some of the time, those diagnosed with adhd inattentive type will exhibit at least six of the nine listed symptoms. Not only do such individuals have these symptoms but they also experience difficulties and disruptions because of them in their daily lives whether at school, work, or even at play.

Symptoms in this ADHD category are:

  1. The person is unable to pay attention to details and tends to make what are considered to be careless mistakes.
  2. They are unable to prevent their attention from waning whether they are busy with work or recreational activities.
  3. They appear to not listen properly when they are spoken to.
  4. They tend to not follow through with instructions so that they invariably leave tasks and other activities unfinished.
  5. They experience problems when it comes to organizing themselves or their tasks and activities.
  6. Tasks and activities that require them to put in sustained mental effort are usually avoided and disliked.
  7. They have a tendency to lose and misplace items and tools that they need in order to complete a task or activity.
  8. Small things will distract them.
  9. They are often seen as being forgetful in their day-to-day lives.

The abovementioned symptoms are usually used in relation to children but for adults there are adapted criteria that were developed by the WHO (World Health Organization). These determine if adults have ADHD inattention symptoms:

  1. The patient makes careless mistakes especially when involved with something they find boring or difficult.
  2. If they are engaged with boring or repetitive work they find they experience problems staying focused.
  3. They have difficulty remaining focused when others speak to them.
  4. They have problems completing tasks.
  5. They have organizational issues.
  6. They tend to avoid tasks and activities that require them to focus mentally.
  7. They tend to lose things they need.
  8. Small things will distract them.
  9. They forget appointments and obligations.

Usually kids who have ADHD with hyperactivity are diagnosed when they are still in preschool or elementary school and this usually comes about because their behavior is disruptive and causes problems. Those who are diagnosed with ADHD predominantly inattentive type very often remain undiagnosed until they are older. They are usually taken to see a doctor because either their teachers or their parents discover that they have problems with staying focused on their tasks or that they forget what they have been taught, etc. It is not uncommon for kids with this subtype of ADHD to remain undiagnosed until they reach middle or high school and there is more pressure on them to be more organized and focused.

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    • raj2006 profile imageAUTHOR

      raj2006 

      7 years ago from New Delhi

      Thanks for the comment, embee77.

      I will definitely take a look at your hubs.

      Raj

    • embee77 profile image

      embee77 

      7 years ago

      Thank you again, Raj, for bringing to light the challenges of ADHD, and now the inattentive subtype. It's often, but not always, found in girls and it's as debilitating as the hyperactive type. I think one of the biggest challenges is that it takes SO LONG to get work done because you can't focus even tho you want to. I found out I had it when I was 40 and have made it a goal to become as much of an expert as possible. Please take a look at my hubs on the subject. And thanks again for your interest.

    working

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