View Full Version : When does an addict with undiagnosed ADHD, become an addict?


mildadhd
09-24-14, 04:19 PM
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When does an addict with undiagnosed ADHD, become an addict?




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dvdnvwls
09-24-14, 04:23 PM
There isn't (and shouldn't be) any difference in the way addiction is diagnosed. Deciding how to manage or treat that addiction is another story.

Flory
09-24-14, 04:27 PM
It's a great question but think could be further extended to when does any addict with for instance childhood trauma and PTSD become an addict.
After all a lot of addiction becomes a Crux for emotional problems/mental health problem.

Abi
09-24-14, 04:27 PM
An addict is an addict, whether s/he has dx'd or undx'd ADHD or Bipolar or Depression or whatever.

Also, what dvdnvwls said.

dvdnvwls
09-24-14, 04:35 PM
If the intended question is more like "when should a self-medicator's addiction be declared a separate problem outside of his other conditions", I think the answer might be "immediately, but making sure to treat the other conditions appropriately at the same time."

Rebelyell
09-24-14, 04:50 PM
When it starts to interfere with your ability to function in life or your getting into constant trouble with the law, money, or can't go to work or it takes up all your time and interest.

daveddd
09-24-14, 09:28 PM
important thing is not to think of adhd as a specific pathogenic disease, its not

its a syndrome defined by difficulties is regulating the emotional states of the self

chances are , more addicts will meet the criteria of having chronic difficulties in regulating emotional states , so adhd

an addiction occurs when problems arise in regulating emotional states with drugs

while at the time doing it despite of negative consequences

sarahsweets
09-25-14, 04:13 AM
I believe I've always been an addict. It just took awhile for my drug of choice to manifest itself and f++k up my life.

DichotOhMy
09-25-14, 04:35 PM
Powerlessness is powerlessness. The only way that ADHD relates to addiction, in my opinion, is that like certain other brain disorders, coping mechanisms, and thus the threshold of powerlessness, is lowered.

mildadhd
09-26-14, 12:11 AM
..Diagnosing ADHD in cocaine and amphetamine addicts is tricky, because the drugs themselves will drive physical and mental hyperactivity and disorganization.

Under the influence of cocaine or crystal meth, a normally sedate person may resemble someone with severe ADHD.

The other complicating factor is that, from adolescence onward, people with ADHD are at an elevated risk for addiction to cocaine and other stimulants.

It becomes difficult to sort out what came first: addiction or ADHD.

Having attention deficit disorder myself, I have an intuitive feel for recognizing the conditions in others, but the diagnostic key is the history of ADHD symptoms since childhood, predating the drug use.


ADHD is a major predisposing factor for addiction, but it is frequently missed by physicians.

I have been struck by how often addicted patients of mine with self-evident ADHD traits have eluded diagnosis throughout childhood and well into their adult years.

Some others were diagnosed as children but never seem to have received consistent treatment.

In very few cases have any of them been treated for the condition as adults.

A Yale University study has shown that among cocaine users with ADHD, those who are treated only for their addiction but not for their predisposing ADHD don't do as well.

In this Yale study as many as 35% of cocaine users who presented for treatment met the diagnostic criteria for childhood ADHD. (*1)

In another study, as many as 40 per cent of adult alcoholics were found to have underlying attention deficit (hyperactivity) disorder. (*2)

People with ADHD are twice as likely as others to fall into substance abuse and nearly four times as likely as others to move from alcohol to other psychoactive drugs (*3)

People with ADHD are also more likely to smoke, to gamble and have any number of other addictive behaviours.

Among crystal meth addicts a significant minority, 30 percent or more, also have lifelong ADHD. (*4)

The link between ADHD and a predisposition to addiction is obvious and,..


-Gabor Mate M.D., "In The Realm Of Hungry Ghosts", APPENDIX II, "A Close Link: Attention Deficit Disorder and Addictions".



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