Getting to Know the ADD Types – Type 1: Classic ADD

classic add type 1

Do you have ADD or ADHD? If so, do you know which of the 7 types you have? There is a way to know for sure.

Here are the signs and symptoms of ADD Type 1 (also known as Classic ADD and ADHD):

Core ADD Symptoms 

Though each of the ADD subtypes has its own set of symptoms, they all share the same core symptoms.

• A short attention span for regular, routine, everyday tasks (homework, chores, etc.)
• Distractibility
• Organization problems (like having a messy room, always running late, etc.)
• Procrastination
• Forgetfulness
• Problems with follow-through
• Poor impulse control (saying or doing something before thinking it through)

ADD Type 1 Symptoms

In addition to the core symptoms, the unique characteristics of Type 1/Classic ADD include:

• Inattentiveness
• Has trouble listening when others are speaking; frequently interrupts
• Makes careless mistakes/poor attention to detail
• Hyperactivity
• Has difficulty waiting their turn
• Acts as though they’re driven by a motor
• Talks excessively

ADD Quick Facts

• Classic ADD is the most common diagnosis of the seven types and is the easiest to recognize.
• As babies, they tend to be colicky, active and wiggly. As children, they tend to be noisy, impulsive and demanding. Their hyperactivity, constant need for excitement, and conflict-seeking behavior typically make them the center of attention.
• In adolescence and adulthood, people who suffer from Classic ADD typically have difficulties handling stress and maintaining relationships.
• Parents of these kids are often tired, overwhelmed and even embarrassed by the behavior of their non-stop, hard-to-control children.
• This pattern tends to be seen more frequently in boys.
• As a group, Classic ADD individuals have low self-esteem.
• The standard treatment for Classic ADD in both children and adults is stimulant medications, such as Ritalin or Adderall. Sometimes negative reactions to these medications can be extreme, such as hallucinations, violent outbursts, psychosis and suicidal behavior.

Implementing these six tips will help you manage the symptoms of ADD Type 1:

ADD_Classic Type 1

Keep Moving:

Due to hyperactivity and impulsivity, those with Classic ADD frequently fall short when attempting to complete concentration tasks. To help improve concentration, frequent movement is essential. The more that exercise is incorporated into mundane activities, the easier it will be to concentrate.

Make it Fun:

For children who have trouble concentrating during educational activities, a busy activity right beforehand, such as cardio, can help improve concentration. Additionally, children with Type 1 are more focused when educational or clean-up tasks are presented as a race, obstacle course, or other fun game.

Be a Stand-up Employee:

If you have a desk job, stand up and move around at least once an hour. Creating an organized and creative work environment will also help you focus and maximize productivity.

Get Good Sleep:

For optimal functioning and focus, get 7-9 hours of sleep each night. To restore proper balance to your sleep cycle, avoid common sleep stealers like caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, daytime naps, and using technology right before bed.

Create a Support Structure:

Maintaining relationships with friends and family who support you and understand your personality can be beneficial in helping you cope with Type 1 flare-ups.

Get a Customized Solution:

Like many other mental health conditions, ADD is not just a single and simple disorder; therefore, treatment is not a one-size-fits-all solution. Each of the seven types of ADD requires a different treatment plan. What works for one person with ADD may not work for another—or could even make the symptoms worse!

ADD is a neurobiological disorder with serious psychological and social consequences. Amen Clinics is here to help you understand your brain and provide treatment options that address more than just symptoms.

Want more information? Download Amen Clinics’ free Getting to Know the 7 ADD Types eBook.

Healing ADD starts with knowing if you have it and then finding out which type you have. We’ve helped tens of thousands of people with ADD from all over the world. If you suspect that you or a loved one might have ADD, don’t wait to get help. Call us today at 888-288-9834 or visit us online to schedule a visit.


  1. Even I have to read these type of ‘What is ADD or general info on ADD’ articles to remind myself of the characteristics. I thought I had a ‘slight or moderate’ case of ADD. Imagine my shock when the medical professional informed me that I was severe!

    That my ‘typical’ ADD behavior is not typical for others or that my mother raised a rude and inconsiderate person, far from it! How many times do you have to read or see something to finally learn it? I guess I am still in the process!

    Comment by Liz Naples — June 4, 2018 @ 6:31 AM

  2. I hear you on this, Liz. It is mind boggling to me that I actually have this! However, in raising two boys, (now young men) one with and one without, I see myself in him (the” with” one) daily. I also see his tremendous difficulties as he will not embrace the diagnosis. So, keep telling your story . It is important to others who may have this “interesting ” and challenging condition!

    Comment by Terri Brohard — June 4, 2018 @ 8:01 AM

  3. I was curious about ADD/ADHD one day and took it upon myself to learn more about it. I found this quiz online and decided to take it. Apparently it says that I may have this type of ADD! I’ve also looked at this link ( I see so, so much of myself in all the behaviors this website lists! You would not believe how forgetful I am!
    I am still a teenager and I wish I could get this sort of thing checked out by my doctor. I highly suspect that I may have ADD, but obviously, a self diagnosis is not reliable. I’ve let my mother know about this, but she just assumes all of it is ” just a little bit of anxiety”.

    Comment by Roy Horn — July 30, 2018 @ 12:52 AM

  4. I’m pretty young, but my dad has ADD and I think I have it too. I took the test and it said I had Overfocused, Temporal Lobe, Limbic, and Anxious ADD. However, I’ve looked and I also have some symtoms (not all) of every type of ADD, including the ones I was actually diagnosed with! The only one I had all the symptoms of was one I wasn’t even diagnosed with, Inattentive ADD.

    Comment by Olivia — May 10, 2019 @ 7:54 AM

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