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What Are the Symptoms of ADHD?

The typical symptoms of ADHD: Inattentive and Hyperactive/impulsive symptoms.

While many children may appear inattentive or restless, this does not automatically mean they have ADHD. It is common for toddler-age children to be very active and run around. It only becomes a clinical concern when the symptoms of ADHD last for more than six months and is severe enough to affect the child’s social and school life, compared with children of the same age. Symptoms will be apparent in at least two settings - at school and home.

The typical symptoms of ADHD include:

Inattentive symptoms:

  • Fail to pay close attention to details or make careless mistakes in schoolwork
  • Have trouble staying focused in tasks or play
  • Appear not to listen, even when spoken to directly
  • Have difficulty following through on instructions and fail to finish schoolwork or chores
  • Have trouble organising tasks and activities
  • Avoid or dislike tasks that require focused mental effort, such as homework
  • Lose items needed for tasks or activities, for example, toys, school assignments, pencils
  • Be easily distracted
  • Forget to do daily activities

Hyperactive / impulsive symptoms:

  • Fidget with or tap his or her hands or feet, or squirm in the seat
  • Have difficulty staying seated in the classroom or other situations
  • Be on the go, in constant motion
  • Run around or climb in situations when it's not appropriate
  • Have trouble playing or doing an activity quietly
  • Talk too much
  • Blurt out answers, interrupting the questioner
  • Have difficulty waiting for his or her turn
  • Interrupt or intrude on others' conversations, games, or activities

If you’re worried that your child shows symptoms of ADHD, click here for a quick assessment!

Information provided by:

Dr Keith Hariman headshot

Dr Keith Hariman

Specialist in Psychiatry, OT&P Healthcare

Please note that all medical articles featured on our website have been reviewed by qualified healthcare doctors. The articles are for general information only and are not medical opinions nor should the contents be used to replace the need for a personal consultation with a qualified medical professional on the reader's medical condition.

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