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attention deficit disorder

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noun
  1. a condition, usually in children, marked by inattentiveness, dreaminess, and passivity. Abbreviation: ADD
  2. (no longer in technical use) attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.
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Origin of attention deficit disorder

First recorded in 1980–85
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for attention deficit disorder

attention deficit disorder

noun
  1. a disorder, particularly of children, characterized by excessive activity and inability to concentrate on one task for any length of timeAbbreviation: ADD
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Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for attention deficit disorder

n.

(abbreviated ADD) became a diagnosis in the third edition of the "Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders" (1980); expanded to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder ("the co-existence of attentional problems and hyperactivity, with each behavior occurring infrequently alone;" ADHD) in DSM-III (1987).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

attention deficit disorder in Medicine

attention deficit disorder

(ə-tĕnshən)
n.
  1. A syndrome, usually diagnosed in childhood, characterized by a persistent pattern of impulsiveness, a short attention span, and sometimes hyperactivity, and interfering especially with academic, occupational, and social performance.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.

attention deficit disorder in Culture

Attention Deficit Disorder

A disorder characterized by a difficulty in retaining focus, especially on tasks, for long periods of time.

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Note

One of the most common reasons children are brought into therapy, ADD is often treated with the somewhat controversial drug Ritalin®, which is thought to work by stimulating the attention-focusing structures of the brain.
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.