ADHD and Addictions Blog Posts, Books and Articles
While adults with ADHD are only 5% of the population, ADDers are dramatically over represented in people who are addicted to alcohol and drugs, the SMALLEST numbers I’ve seen on ADHD and addiction are 20-25% in peer reviewed clinical journals in Pub Med, and I’ve frequently seem much larger ones. If adults with ADHD aren’t diagnosed and treated, and 85% of them aren’t, they will find ways to treat themselves or self medicate.
Unfortunately as many former addicts have told me, many Adders going through rehab or drug and alcohol counselling, aren't told about the connections between Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Addictions, which will make it harder for them to stop and stay sober.
Blog Posts on ADHD and Addictions
Study 33% of Alcoholics had ADHD 65% of Drug Users Had ADHD
From the Journal Alcohol and Alcoholism.
ADHD and Addictions 5 more Clinical Studies
ADHD adults are 5% of the population, but check out these clinical peer reviewed studies.
35% of Cocaine Abusers had ADHD
24% of Psychoactive Substance Abusers had ADHD
32% of Cocaine Users and Alcoholics had ADHD
70% of Crystal Meth (Methamphetamine) Inpatients had ADHD
83% of Inhalant Abusers and 55% of Methamphetamine Abusers in Japan had ADHD.
ADHD and Crystal Meth,
the missing connection
I've blogged about this in 3 parts on my Adult
ADD Strengths blog. Here's one quote
“One third of the subjects (32%) who began using between
the ages of 10 and 15 reported doing so because of the calming
effect that methamphetamine had on them. These participants
were classified using the Wender Utah Rating Scale as having
Crystal Meth connection part one Part Two Part Three
Books on ADHD and Addictions
In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters with Addiction
Dr. Gabor Mate who has ADHD and has written a book on ADHD, Scattered Minds: A New Look At the Origins and Healing of Attention Deficit Disorder, is staff Physican at the Portland Hotel, ground zero in Vancouver's poorest, most drug infested neighbourhood known as the downtown east side. This book gives very personal stories of some of his patients with addictions and he talks about the root causes of addiction the different types of addictions (it's not all booze and drugs) and what should be done about the problem.
When Too Much Isn't Enough: Ending the Destructive Cycle of ADHD and Addictive Behavior
By Wendy Richardson
The Link Between A.D.D and Addiction: Getting the Help You Deserve
By Wendy Richardson
Articles on ADHD and Addictions
Alcoholism and Other Addictions
Wendy Richardson explores how some ADD people self medicate. She's also the author of these 2 books on ADHD and addictions
Deficit Disorder Impulsivity Symptoms and Internet Addiction
Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, Volume 58 Issue 5 Page
487 - October 2004. Evaluates the relationship between the
I believe that the internet is like crack cocaine for ADDers. Many of my Adult ADHD coaching clients have problems spending too much timer on the internet. I've also heard other ADHD professionals talk about the huge problems ADDers have with the internet.
on Methylphenidate Less Likely to Abuse Drugs
Pre-teens who have been treated with methylphenidate may develop
an aversion to abusable drugs, according to a team of researchers
from Harvard Medical School. The Harvard study also rebuts
arguments that treating children with stimulants such as Ritalin,
Concerta or other medications containing methylphenidate may
lead to later substance abuse.
Harvard Magazine. Great article on understanding the process
of addiction focused on new understandin of neurochemisty.
"...draws a parallel between the hormonal responses caused
by cocaine and those associated with thrilling or frightening
pursuits like hang-gliding and bungee-cord jumping: "Cocaine
triggers major stress hormones like epinephrine [adrenaline],
norepinephrine, adrenocorticotropic hormone [ACTH], and serotonin.
These are the same ones that surge up during bungee jumping."
Stimulant Therapy of ADHD Beget Later Substance Abuse?
A Meta-analytic Review of the Literature. By the Clinical
Research Program in Pediatric Psychopharmacology, Massachusetts
General Hospital, Boston, Harvard Medical School, Pediatrics
2003. Conclusion? No. They found it actually reduced the risk
of later substance abuse.
of ADHD and Its Treatment on Substance Abuse in Adults
8 page PDF
By Timothy E. Wilens, M.D. J Clin Psychiatry 2004;65[suppl
3]:38–45. Discusses the prevalence of ADHD and substance
abuse, course of substance use disorders in adults with ADHD,
connections between substance use and ADHD, stimulants and
substance abuse, treatment of adults with ADHD and substance
abuse, ADHD medications, concerns and monitoring.
Stimulants for the Treatment of ADD in Cocaine-Dependant Adults
Ricardo Castaneda, M.D.,Robert Levy, M.D.,Marcos Hardy, M.D.,
Ph.D.,Manuel Trujillo, M.D. This column offers recommendations
about the diagnosis and treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity
disorder (ADHD) among cocaine-dependent adults based on our
year-long study of long-acting stimulants in the treatment
of patients with these disorders.The lack of phenomenological
information about these comorbid disorders hinders diagnostic
and treatment efforts by clinicians.
of ADHD in Children Increases Risk of Drug Use in Adolescence
says longitudinal study in The Journal of Abnormal Psychology.
Those children with the most severe attention problems in
childhood were most at risk for alcohol and marijuana problems
and cigarette smoking by their teens. Executive functions
associated with inattention and not impulsivity-hyperactivity
may be at the root of the progression to substance use.