Myth: People with ADD are always “hyper.”
Reality: Before continuing, let’s clear up the confusion between the terms “ADD” and “ADHD.” The official diagnostic categories according to the DSM IV of the American Psychiatric Association all use the heading “ADHD.” According to the manual, there are three subtypes of ADHD: predominantly inattentive type; predominantly impulsive, hyperactive type; and combined type, where inattention and hyperactivity are both present. So, science now knows that not all people with ADD are hyperactive. Increased physical activity is only one of a complex of symptoms that characterize ADD, which is the popular term that will be used throughout this book to cover the 6 whole range of ADD behaviors. Today, professionals have identified the following as the core traits of ADD:
- hyper- or over-activity
We characterize only those who exhibit significant hyperactivity as having ADHD. Since many ADDers can sit still and focus for long periods of time, particularly on activities that they enjoy, parents, physicians, and teachers may be misled and miss the more subtle manifestations of ADD.