Either (1) or (2) or both

  (1)  Six or more of the following symptoms of inattention have persisted for at least six months to a degree that is maladaptive and not consistent with developmental level:


    • - Often fails to give close attention to details, or makes careless errors
    • - Often has difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities
    • - Often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly
    • - Often does not follow through on instructions and fails to finish schoolwork, chores or duties (not due to oppositional behavior or failure to understand instructions)
    • - Often has difficulty organizing tasks and activities
    • - Often avoids, dislikes or is reluctant to engage in tasks that require sustained mental effort (such as schoolwork or homework)
    • - Often loses things necessary for tasks or activities (e.g., toys, school assignments, pencils, books or tools)
    • - Is often easily distracted by extraneous stimuli
    • - Is often forgetful in daily activities

(2)  Six or more of the following symptoms of hyperactivity/impulsivity have persisted for at least six months to a degree that is maladaptive and not consistent with developmental level:


  • - Often fidgets with hands or feet or squirms
  • - Often leaves seat in classroom or in other situations where remaining seated is expected
  • - Often inappropriately runs about or climbs excessively - older children may have feelings of restlessness
  • - Often has difficulty playing or participating in leisure activities in a quiet manner
  • - Often "on the go" or acts as if "driven by a motor"
  • - Often talks excessively



- Often blurts out answers before questions have been completed

- Often has difficulty awaiting turn

  • - Often interrupts or intrudes on others
  • Most symptoms that caused impairment were present before 7 years of age and impairment from the symptoms is present in two or more settings (i.e., school and home).

Clear evidence of clinically significant impairment in social, academic, or occupational functioning. The symptoms do not occur exclusively due to a pervasive development disorder, schizophrenia, or other psychotic disorder and are better accounted for by another disorder (depression, anxiety disorder, dissociative disorder, or a personality disorder).

Diagnosis must be made by a qualified clinician and can be:

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Combined Type if both criteria 1 and 2 are met for the past 6 months

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Predominantly Inattentive Type if 1 is met but not 2

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Type if criteria 2 is met but 1 is not

The diagnostic criteria for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in DSM-5 are similar to those in DSM-IV. The same 18 symptoms are used as in DSM-IV, and continue to be divided into two symptom domains (inattention and hyperactivity/impulsivity), of which at least six symptoms in one domain are required for diagnosis.

However, several changes have been made in DSM-5:
1) Examples have been added to the criterion items to facilitate application across the life span
2) The cross-situational requirement has been strengthened to “several” symptoms in each setting
3) Onset criterion has been changed from “symptoms that caused impairment were present before age 7 years” to “several inattentive or hyperactive-impulsive symptoms were present prior to age 12
4) Subtypes have been replaced with presentation specifiers that map directly to the prior subtypes
5) Co-morbid diagnosis with autism spectrum disorder is now allowed. (previously, there was little research on how these two disorders co-occur)
6) Symptom threshold change has been made for adults (5 symptoms versus six for children)7) ADHD was placed in the neurodevelopmental disorders chapter. 

7) ADHD was placed in the neurodevelopmental disorders chapter.