ADD as a Dual Diagnosis with Addiction

ADD as a Dual Diagnosis with Addiction

Attention Deficit Disorder is a chronic condition that is one of the most common childhood disorders. You can experience a number of symptoms such as impulsivity, not being able to focus, forgetness, daydreaming, unusual sleeping patterns, and thrill seeking. Attention Deficit Disorder is different than those who have the same disorder with Hyperactivity because ADD children are not disruptive at school and can even sit in class quietly whereas those with Hyperactivity tend to act out in class. Those with ADD have a tendency to see big picture concepts more clearly because of their unusual thought processing. Those can also have a tendency to go under the influence of addiction because their condition makes their academic and work performance very difficult.

ADD patients constantly go through underperformance through childhood and adolescence. Their self-esteem is hurt because of this which is what makes them likely to turn to substance abuse. They also tend to suffer altered dopamine levels where it is received to the brain in lesser amounts compared to typical people, giving them a lessened inability to feel normal pleasure. Lacking of pleasure can cause ADD patients to feel isolated, lack strong social support, and feel lonely. In order to seek the pleasure that typical people experience, ADD patients tend to turn to alcohol or have thrill seeking adventures.

Seeking therapy will help patients understand their disorder and learn effective life and coping skills. They can also learn to organize structured daily routines to reduce feeling the need to relapse and feel frustrated. Peer Recovery can also be helpful such as going to Alcoholics Anonymous or Narcotics Anonymous in order for them to gain social support and make lasting friendships. It is important for those with ADD to learn that going under the influence should not be their source for happiness.


Castle Craig Hospital is a landmark of addiction and mental health treatment in Scotland, serving the UK, the EU, and patients from all over the world. Our commitment to long term abstinence has created a successful program of clinical and complementary therapies for mind, body, and spirit. Serving over 10,000 patients for more than 25 years, the Castle Craig model is proven in changing lives. Call our 24 hour free confidential phone-line for information: 0808 231 7723. From outside the UK please call: +44 808 271 7500

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