ADD patients do not necessarily suffer from depression, though some do have both disorders. Bipolar disorder is a range of depressive and abnormally high or manic moods.
People with ADD may make rash decisions all the time, while bipolar patients usually engage in impulsive activities such as high-risk sex or driving during a manic episode.
ADD and bipolar people both suffer from mood swings. However, those with ADD usually shift moods within hours, while bipolar patients normally sustain mania or depression for at least two weeks.
ADD is considered a chronic condition, but bipolar illness usually is episodic and also alternates with more normal moods.
Age of Onset
Most people with ADD exhibit symptoms of the illness in early childhood, while many bipolar people have their first episode around the age of 18.
While some symptoms of bipolar disorder and attention deficit disorder (ADD) may appear similar, there are some distinct differences between the two mental illnesses. Some people may suffer from both conditions. Those with ADD suffer from a severe inability to focus and may also exhibit impulsive behavior such as interrupting people.