Essay on Adhd and Substance Abuse

1393 Words Oct 12th, 2011 6 Pages
ADHD and Substance Abuse

The Evidence Of Substance Abuse With ADHD The purpose of this paper is to identify the link between ADHD and substance abuse. Substance abuse is a true threat to people who are diagnosed with psychological disorders. Among the questions of precursors to substance abuse, lies the hypothesis that individuals diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) may become addicted to drugs or alcohol. Multiple studies have been done to either prove or disprove this hypothesis. This paper will discuss the results of those studies and demonstrate whether this hypothesis stands true
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The results of the study demonstrated that children who started stimulant treatment early, had the least chance of abusing drugs or alcohol ion adult years. On the other end, children who started stimulant therapy later, in the eight to twelve year range, became more likely to abuse drugs, especially cocaine. Another aspect of the study described that in some of the children who abused drugs, their substance abuse behavior was mediated by antisocial personality disorder. This finding alone demonstrates a negative side effect of stimulant therapy in the treatment of ADHD. There is a study that tested the effects of stimulant therapy in both girls and boys. This study was significant since boys are six to nine times more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD then girls. The study was a population-based cohort study of 5,718 children. The groups were identified as treated ADHD group and untreated ADHD group. Children in the treated group were given stimulants and/or a combination of tricyclic antidepressants. Upon completion of the study, approximately eighteen and a third years, the results were finalized. Untreated subjects showed a higher substance abuse rate of approximately seven to eight percent. The more interesting aspect is that gender specifically. Girls showed no significant difference between both groups. On the other hand, boys who received stimulant therapy, showed a difference of fifty four percent

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