The latest ADHD news about substance abuse and smoking confirms the earlier studies. We will look at these studies in the article and then look at how parental intervention can help to prevent these problems from becoming an issue.
One of the earlier studies was published in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychology. This study confirms that children and teens with ADHD are more likely to have problems with drug abuse, smoking, bad behavior. The children studied were ten years old and they were actually followed for a full ten more years until they reached the age of twenty.The teens with ADHD were one and a half times more likely to be involved in substance abuse and alcohol.The interesting fact from this study shows that those teenagers who had come to terms with their ADHD and were coping much better were far less likely to have any problems with substance abuse.The risk for those children with ADHD who also had behavioral problems such as ODD and other conduct disorders were three times more than those who were displaying more normal behaviour.
The second study I want to examine concerns smoking and ADHD teenagers. It should be pointed out that ADHD kids are much more likely to become chain smokers. The reason is that the dopamine brain transmitter which is often called the ‘pleasure chemical’ is in short supply and smoking can give that chemical an extra boost. Many people claim that it can help them concentrate and certainly ADHD teenagers are no exception. That is why intervening at an early stage is so important. The study published in the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry leaves us in no doubt about the dangers. They surveyed over a thousand high school students. They say those suffering from inattention and concentration problems were three times more likely to be smokers. This problem was less prevalent among those teenagers who were displaying symptoms of hyperactivity, restlessness and impulsive behaviour.
Massachusetts General Hospital has also done some work on his issue. The latest ADHD news from the adolescent research unit there suggests that teenagers with ADHD are definitely at risk and it seems that there is a strong correlation between the severity of the symptoms and the risk.Those kids with fewer or less severe symptoms were less at risk. The main factor is the lack of the dopamine chemical in the brain which I have explained above.
Parental intervention which may help :-
- assisting kids in how to deal with impulsive actions from early on
- helping them to cope with managing school and home life and building a supportive network of family members
- using behaviour modification effectively with consequences and rewards.
- observe kids for signs of early depression or even drug abuse when they cannot cope with problems at school
Latest ADHD news from medical authorities, experts and researchers is suggesting that a much more comprehensive approach must be taken and that conventional psychostimulants alone are just not the answer or even the solution.There are far more effective and cheaper ways which I have outlined on my website below.