The Link Between ADHD and Addiction

Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) is a neurological disorder that impacts the brain’s functions that are needed to assess, plan, and execute daily life.

People with ADHD are at higher risk of abusing drugs or alcohol than people without it.

Mental illnesses, such as depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) usually coexist with addiction. Sometimes people who struggle with addiction are unaware of any co-occurring mental health conditions. Some mental health problems are secondary, triggered by frustration of coping with ADHD symptoms.


In reference to ADHD and addiction, WebMD states, “People with ADHD tend to be more impulsive and likely to have behavior problems, both of which can contribute to drug and alcohol abuse, researchers say. Also, both ADHD and alcoholism tend to run in families. A child with ADHD who has a parent with alcoholism is more likely to also develop an alcohol abuse problem.” Drugs and alcohol are often used as a way to self-medicate to cope, which puts a person at risk of severe physical, mental, and psychological health complications, or death.

A person with ADHD has differences in brain activity that interfere with attention, the ability to stay still, and self-control. It affects school, work, home life, and relationships. According to an article for ADDitude, Inside the ADHD Mind, “Doctors used to view ADHD as a stand-alone disorder. But research now suggests that the majority of individuals who have ADHD also suffer from a mood disorder, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), oppositional defiant disorder (ODD), a learning disorder, autism, or some other psychological or neurological problem.”   

If you suffer from addiction and a mental or psychological condition, you must be treated for a dual diagnosis for a successful recovery. This type of treatment is done simultaneously, because one cannot be treated without the other. Do not wait another day. Get help now to feel better mentally, physically, and psychologically.

adhd and addiction

Do not let addiction destroy your life. If you or a loved one struggles with addiction, get help today. Nexus Recovery Services specializes in addiction treatment and encompasses holistic therapy for the mind, body, and soul with a focus on staying active and connected to nature. Our mission is to provide tools and support for every client’s seamless transition into a meaningful and fulfilling life of sobriety. We offer a free and confidential consultation.

If you are considering treatment for yourself or a loved one, call us today.

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