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The Different Types, Or Styles, Of Adhd

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The Different Types, or Styles, of ADHD

In this section we will discover the Different Types of ADHD:

"Inattentive Type": Trouble Paying Attention just like Winnie the Pooh

"Classic ADHD": Tiggers like to bounce, and may have ADHD...

"Over-Focused ADHD": Rabbit tends his garden, but is not "flexible"

"ADHD with Anxiety": Piglet is nervous and worries...

"ADHD and Depression": Eeyore is always so sad...

And The Very Hard Cases of ADHD.


Inattentive ADD:

Just Like Winnie the Pooh

Winnie the Pooh is the classic picture of Inattentive ADHD. In other works we have called this "Space Cadet" style ADHD. Dr. Daniel Amen refers to this as "Inattentive ADD". These are people that suffer from "brain fog" as they go through their day.

Although Pooh is very lovable and kind, he is also inattentive, sluggish, slow-moving, unmotivated. He is a classic daydreamer.

People with this type of ADHD are often seen as being:

Easily distracted

Having short attention spans to a task that is not interesting, or is hard

Daydreams when others are talking to him/her

A person who cannot find anything that they have just put down somewhere...

A person who is always late

Is easily bored

This type of ADHD is caused by the prefrontal cortex of the brain actually slowing down (instead of speeding up activity) when placed under a work load, like reading or doing homework. This part of the brain looks normal when "at rest" but actually looks like it is starting to fall asleep when asked to "go to work." This makes it very hard to pay attention to school work, get homework done, listen to the teacher, clean your room, and so on.

We have actually observed this hundreds of times with subjects on an EEG. When at rest, the brainwave activity is pretty normal. But once the subject is asked to read, or to do a math worksheet, the subject's brainwave activity begins to look like the subject is falling asleep. This sure makes school hard for these students!

Winnie the Pooh style inattention is seen mostly in girls. It responds well to stimulants, such as Ritalin and Adderall, but other interventions work well also


Over-Focused ADHD:

Rabbit Tends to His Garden... and don't bother him.

The least flexible character in all of the stories of Winnie the Pooh and Christopher Robin has got to be Rabbit. Oh, he can get a lot of things done, and he's the one character who will be prepared when winter comes, but he has a very hard time shifting from one activity to another. He is absolutely "task oriented" and is focused to whatever that task might be.

The person with "Over-Focused ADHD" is much the same. He has trouble shifting attention from one activity to another, and he frequently "gets stuck" in loops of negative thoughts. He can be obsessive, and very inflexible. He can also be oppositional and argumentative to parents.

He may be like a "bull dog" and not give up until he gets his way, or until his worn-out parents finally say, "yes," to his 100th request for something. His parents are often worn-out, worn-down, fed-up, and ready to break. Parenting a child like this is hard.

Someone with "Over-Focused ADHD" is like Rabbit, in that he:

May worry a LOT, even over things that don't really matter much

Can be very oppositional to parents

May like to argue

May be somewhat compulsive about the way things ought to be done

Will have a very hard time shifting from one activity to another

Always wants to have his way

The cause of this type of ADHD is an over-active Anterior Cingulate Gyrus. This part of the brain is over-active all of the time. And, to make things worse, when a "work load" is put on the brain, such as school work or a chore to be completed, there is the common ADHD symptom of decreased activity level in the Pre-Frontal Cortex.

In this type of ADHD some stimulants, and too much use of L-Tyrosine to increase dopamine production can actually make the problem of over-focus worse. So be careful.


Piglet is a great friend, but sure scares easily...

Piglet is that small, almost frail character from the Hundred Acre Wood. He is a great friend, and very loyal. But he is always worried, nervous, and easily startles. Sometimes he is so nervous that he stutters. So it is with some kids with ADHD.

This style of ADHD is very similar to the Rabbit style, except that with "Piglet style" the child's mid-brain is so over-aroused that the child is hyper-vigilant and very easily startled. He may be talking all of the time, and is probably touching everything in the room. And, this child is nervous or worried, or anxious. He has trouble shifting attention from one activity to another, and he frequently "gets stuck" in loops of negative thoughts. He can be obsessive, and very inflexible.

In this type of ADHD some stimulants, and too much use of L-Tyrosine to increase dopamine production can actually make the problem of over-focus worse. So be careful.


Thanks for Noticin' Me" says Eeyore...

He walks slowly. He looks sad. He doesn't accomplish much. He's just glad to be noticed. This is Eeyore, the stuffed donkey who is so often in need of his tail being pinned back on. This type of ADHD looks very much like a combination of ADHD and Depression. Some have suggested that up to 25% of children with ADHD are also depressed or suffer from a mild depression called Dysthymic disorder.

Those with this type, or style of ADHD are often:


Have a chronic sadness or low-grade depression;

The seem to be negative, or apathetic;

They have low energy levels;

They just do not seem to care. They often feel worthless, or helpless, or hopeless.

This type of ADHD is called "Limbic System ADHD" by Daniel Amen. And for good reason. SPECT scans show that when the brain is at rest, there is increased activity deep in the limbic system, in parts of the brain called the thalamus and hypothalamus. There is also a decreased level of activity in the underside of the pre-frontal cortex.

When the brain is placed under a work load, as during a homework assignment, nothing changes. The over-active limbic system remains over-active, and the under-active pre-frontal cortex remains under-active.


Tiggers Like to Bounce... Bouncin' is What Tiggers Do Best!

We call this bouncy type of ADHD "Tigger Type" for good reason. This classic form of ADHD is characterized by ADHD with hyperactivity like Tigger

* Inattention

* Impulsivity

* Hyperactivity

* Restlessness

* Disorganization

This type of ADHD reminds us of Tigger from the Winnie the Pooh stories.

Dr. Daniel Amen refers to this type of ADHD as "Classic ADHD" for good reasons.

When you think about someone who has Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, this is the classic picture that you think of.

Someone with this type of ADHD typically:

* Is easily distracted

* Has a LOT of energy

* Is hyperactive

* Can't sit still very long

* Is fidgety

* Talks a LOT, and can be LOUD

* Is very impulsive, does not think before he acts

* Has trouble waiting his turn in line, or in games

* and more...

Tigger Type ADHD results from UNDER-ACTIVITY in the Prefrontal Cortex, both when at rest, and when performing concentration tasks.

This type of ADHD is most often seen in males.


Other, More Difficult Kinds of ADHD:

There are other kinds, or types, of ADHD that you should be aware of. There are no Winne the Pooh characters for these difficult types, as the creator of these children's stories would never have created a character with these challenging, difficult traits. These distinct types of ADHD can be very severe. They require significant treatment, and great patience on the part of the parents.

The Temporal Lobes and ADHD

Some people with ADHD can be very hard to live with. They can have gigantic mood swings, get very angry for almost no reason, and be nearly impossible to live with on a daily basis. The key to look for with this type of ADHD is anger outbursts for little or no reason...

People with decreased activity in the left temporal lobes can especially have problems with temper outbursts, aggressive behaviors, and even violence toward animals or other people.

Temporal Lobe ADHD is characterized by:

Inattention, just like in other kinds of ADHD because during concentration there is a decrease in activity in the pre-frontal cortex;

Being easily irritated or frustrated;

Aggressive behaviors;

Dark moods, big mood swings;


Breaking rules, in trouble a lot, in fights a lot;

Defiant toward authority, disobedient toward parents and others;

Can't get along with others, can be anti-social or just in trouble a lot;

Often has terrible handwriting and problems learning;

You expect him to be arrested at any time...

Individuals with this type of ADHD are often treated with a combination of stimulants, like Ritalin, and anti-convulsants.

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