Drug Abuse Risk Highest Amongst Teenagers with ADHD: Study

Drug Abuse Risk Highest Amongst Teenagers with ADHD: StudyA study carried out by a group of the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine researchers has discovered that drug and alcohol abuse is most likely to be seen amongst teenagers suffering from ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder).

Earlier, studies had revealed that medications could control aggressive and abusive behaviour seen amongst ADHD patients. Scientists were of the view that medications cause a side-effect that could lessen adults' odds of abusing drugs or alcohol.

But, the latest study claimed that even medications available currently do not have the potential to counter the substance abuse risk in adolescents. In fact, they are more likely to do cannabis smoking and consume alcoholic drinks.

The study was aimed at identifying if ADHD children had a raised risk of substance dependence or use or abuse. It went for a period of eight years and included a total of 600 children, discovering that some 35% of participants used one or more substances at an average age of 15 years.

On the other hand, only 20% non-ADHD children reported the same. Cigarette smoking rate was also 95 higher in ADHD teens, when compared to non-ADHD ones.

"We are working hard to understand the reasons why children with ADHD have increased risk of drug abuse", said Professor Brooke Molina.