Difference Between ADD and ADHD



ADD is the shortened form of Attention Deficit disorder. ADHD is the shortened form of Attention Deficit Hyperactive disorder. Except the nomenclature both disorders are same. The real cause of the disease is not clear. However there are risk factors and contributory factors were identified.

Currently ADHD is classified as psychiatric disorder. Mostly this will affect the children before the age of 7 years. However the attention deficit disorder is observed in the old age also. ADHD mostly affects the boys. They are at two time risk of female children. Attention deficit, hyperactivity and impulsive behaviour are common features of ADHD. These symptoms should be there at least for 6 months to diagnose the ADHD in a person.

The symptoms of attention deficits are the following:

- Be easily distracted, miss details, forget things, and frequently switch from one activity to another.

- Have difficulty maintaining focus on one task

- Become bored with a task after only a few minutes, unless doing something enjoyable

- Have difficulty focusing attention on organizing and completing a task or learning something new or trouble completing or turning in homework assignments, often losing things (e.g., pencils, toys, assignments) needed to complete tasks or activities

- Not seem to listen when spoken to

- Daydream, become easily confused, and move slowly

- Have difficulty processing information as quickly and accurately as others

- Struggle to follow instructions.

The symptoms of the hyperactivity are the following:

- Fidget and squirm in their seats

- Talk nonstop

- Dash around, touching or playing with anything and everything in sight

- Have trouble sitting still during dinner, school, and story time

- Be constantly in motion

- Have difficulty doing quiet tasks or activities.

The symptoms of impulsiveness are the following:

- Be very impatient

- Blurt out inappropriate comments, show their emotions without restraint, and act without regard for consequences

- Have difficulty waiting for things they want or waiting their turns in games

The disease is diagnosed clinically. The MRI and other investigations have failed to show a neurological involvement in ADHD.

The cause of the disorder is a combination of genetics, diet, environment (Physical, social). In the diet, use of artificial colour and sodium benzoate are found to cause the ADHD in the children.

Treatment of this disorder consists of behavioural therapy. There are groups formed for the ADHD students and this facilitates the interactions between them. The drug for this disorder is methyl phenidate. This is a stimulant drug. But this group of drugs are not shown favourable answer for the disease. However it increases the risk of dependency on this drug.

The children affected by this ADHD or ADD usually face learning difficulties in their studies. More researches need to find a good solution for this disorder.

In Summary:

- ADD and ADHD are same disorders.

- ADD is the word used early and now ADHD is used.

- It is a disorder usually found in children.

- The real cause is not found still.

- The use of artificial colouring and preservatives in the food items increases the risk of developing ADHD.

- The behavioural therapy is shown to be beneficial but not the drug therapy.