Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
ADHD symptoms vary according to symptoms of prominent distractibility, hyperactivity or combinations that can lead to difficulty in school. Studies have shown that between 10-65% of children who have AD/HD as children, continue to have symptoms as adults. The neuropsychological weakness affects the prefrontal cortex portion of the brain that manages impulse control and other important functions, including planning, sequencing, and organizing activities.
Some adults with AD/HD learn to channel their energy into sports-related activities or find other means of coping with the disorder. Many sales people, firefighters, police and entrepreneurs have histories of AD/HD and have used their strengths to their advantage.
Studies from adult substance abuse treatment populations have found AD/HD in about one in every six clients who may have this co-occurring problem and many have been on medications as children to reduce the symptoms in the classroom and home environment.
While medications are recommended, non-addictive meds are highly recommended for those with both ADHD and substance abuse. Medication alone is sometimes not enough. Managing symptoms of ADHD can be difficult and lead to problems in school, work and relationships, finances, and health.
ADHD and Substance Abuse
Research shows that men and women who have ADHD are at increased risk for substance use disorders due to low impulse control and other symptoms common to both addiction and ADHD.
- Have you ever had a period of sobriety and then relapsed?
- Has your life has become unmanageable due to your ADHD?
- Has your cannabis use increased due to your stress?
- Are you taking a benzodiazepine to reduce your anxiety?
- Do you misplace your keys, are you late for appointments or forget about them?
- Are you impulsively spending money on things you don’t really need?
- Did you begin using methamphetamine or cocaine to help you to ‘focus’ and now your life is spinning out of control?