Both Hyperactivity and Impulsivity almost always occur together in young children and is characterized by the inability to sit still or inhibit behaviour. Typically, these are observed by the time the child reaches 4 years of age and increase during the next 3-4 years, peaking in severity when the child is 7-8 years of age. After seven to eight years of age, hyperactive symptoms begin to decline; by the adolescent years, they may be barely discernible to observers although the adolescent may feel restless or unable to settle down. In contrast, impulsive symptoms usually persist throughout life.
Inattention is reduced ability to focus attention and reduced speed of cognitive processing and responding. These children often are described as having a sluggish cognitive tempo and frequently appear to be daydreaming or “off task” or “zoning out”. The symptoms of inattention typically are not apparent until the child is 8-9 years of age. Similar to the pattern of impulsivity, symptoms of inattention usually are a lifelong problem.
ADHD subtype — Some children can have symptoms predominantly in one subtype or both.
- Predominantly inattentive
- Predominantly hyperactive-impulsive