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What’s the difference between ADD and ADHD?

Psychiatric disorders, their medical definition and diagnostic criteria, are compiled in a book called The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of mental disorders (DSM).

In 1980 the DSM III separated ADHD into two categories, namely: ADD (the major characteristics minus hyperactivity and impulsivity) and ADHD (the major characteristics including hyperactivity and impulsivity).

The release of DSM IV in 1994 no longer saw ADD separated from ADHD, rather ADHD was broken into three predominant types, namely:

  • ADHD predominantly Inattentive;
  • ADHD predominantly Hyperactive/Impulsive; and
  • ADHD Combined Type.

The DSM V is due out in 2012.


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