Types of ADHD and Their Various Symptoms

Written By: The Green Crunchy Mother

three children sitting on grass

Disclaimer: This article is not to be used as a replacement for medical advice. Always consult with a doctor if you believe you are suffering from the following conditions. The Green Crunchy Mother shares her life experiences only and what is working with her own children.

As a mother with children that have ADHD, I am constantly reading and researching methods to better understand this. Each day presents itself with a new struggle, but I am also a strong believer that educating ourselves is the best way to understand and help treat the symptoms of ADHD.

Did you know there are different types or categories of ADHD (Attention Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder)? There are actually three main types, and another model identifies six types. Here is a brief discussion of these types of ADHD.

Predominantly Inattentive Type

In this type of ADHD, the person does not necessarily exhibit the hyperactivity and impulsive behavior often associated with ADHD. Instead, the most prominent symptoms are behaviors like making careless errors in schoolwork; inability to focus, even when playing; appearing not to hear you even when you speak directly to him or her; and, without being overtly disobedient, the inattentive type child gets distracted in the middle of chores or tasks and does not finish them (or even start them).

Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Type

Impulsive and hyperactive behaviors characterize this type, with inattentive behavior less noticeable or even absent. Predominantly hyperactive-impulsive types often engage in excessive talking and interrupting; yelling out answers to questions without waiting for the person asking the question to finish; they have difficulty waiting their turn and they are always in motion – climbing, fidgeting, and/or running.

Combination Type

A child with Combination Type ADHD exhibits various behaviors that occur in both of the types listed above.

Another model of ADHD types comes from a physician named Daniel Amen. Although controversy surrounds around his methods, it is still well worth your time to research his work. He recognizes six types of ADHD:

  1. Classic ADD (depending on the source, Amen’s types may or may not include the “H”)

This involves symptoms such as disorganization, distraction, impulsivity, and sometimes hyperactivity.

  1. Inattentive ADD

Children with this type of ADD usually exhibit an inability to be attentive or concentrate. People with inattentive ADD also tend to be disorganized.

  1. Over-Focused ADD

A person with over-focused ADD cannot seem to stop doing a task or shift their attention from one task or focus to another. People with over-focused ADD may be described as obsessive, inflexible, stubborn, negative, or anxious.

  1. Limbic System ADD

Limbic system types usually suffer from depression that is constant and often low grade. Their energy is actually low, and they experience many of the worthless, hopeless feelings associated with depression. They also still have the inattention associated with ADD and ADHD.

  1. Temporal Lobe ADD

This type of ADD is moody and temperamental, often extremely defiant and flagrantly disobedient. Temporal lobe ADD sufferers are also very impulsive, and may have trouble with handwriting specifically and learning in general. This is considered a “very difficult” form of ADD or ADHD.

  1. Ring of Fire ADD

As you might guess from the description, this type of ADD usually presents in angry behavior, over-sensitivity to the environment, and distraction. This type is something like a combination of ADHD and bipolar disorder.

To learn more about Daniel Amen, you can follow this link on Wikipedia (I do not make a profit if you click on this link):


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