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ADHD and Addiction: Is There A Connection?

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a problem that typically affects children to young adults. Sometimes, though, it lasts into adulthood or can even develop in adults. Despite that, studies suggest that teens with ADHD are more likely to develop substance abuse problems. However, what is the link between ADHD and addiction?

Is Substance Abuse and Addiction More Common in People With ADHD?

Woman struggles with adhd and addictionSeveral studies suggest that there’s a solid link between ADHD and drug abuse. People with ADHD are five to 10 times more likely to develop an addiction versus those who don’t have ADHD. Another study found that 25 percent of the adult participants had ADHD at some point in their lives.

Research also indicates that it’s more common for children who have ADHD to struggle with addiction as teens. Nearly 15% of adolescents with ADHD and between 15 and 17 developed an addiction as adults. In most cases, those adults never got treatment for their ADHD problem.

Do Certain Drugs Lead to the Development of ADHD?

Doctors believe that some drugs have a link to ADHD. Studies have found a connection between teens using marijuana and developing the disorder. Researchers have also found a link between it and other recreational drugs.

The use of recreational drugs doesn’t just lead to ADHD. It can cause other mental and psychological disorders such as obsessive-compulsive disorder. People are more likely to develop ADHD or these other issues when they use drugs at a young age. The reason is due to the chemical imbalance that the drugs cause.

Why Do ADHD and Addiction Have Such a Strong Connection?

Other behavioral disorders can lead to the development of addiction. However, few of them have as strong of a link to addiction as ADHD. Experts believe that this strong connection is the result of the impulsive nature that ADHD causes in people. To make matters worse, both drug abuse and ADHD can run in families.

On that same note, people with ADHD are more likely to have behavioral problems and act out. When teens look for ways to act out, many of them turn to drug use. It doesn’t take long for this act of rebellion to lead to addiction.

Find the Help That Your Teen Needs

Finding help for young adults isn’t difficult thanks to Zelus Recovery. We provide mental health and addiction treatment programs. As part of our ongoing effort to help young adults, our range of programs includes:

Don’t let an underlying mental disorder lead you down the path to addiction. Let us provide you with treatment for ADHD and addiction. Call Zelus Recovery today at 208.518.0797 to find out more about how we can help.