At Beach House Center for Recovery, we understand addressing attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and addiction requires a specialized and comprehensive approach. 

Our team of dedicated mental health clinicians, addiction experts, and psychiatric providers is committed to providing compassionate and effective treatment for individuals facing the unique challenges of co-occurring ADHD and addiction.

ADHD can be a lifelong condition characterized by focus, impulse control, and hyperactivity difficulties. When combined with addiction, these challenges can intensify, leading to a cycle of substance misuse.

Our personalized treatment plans are tailored to address the root causes of addictive behaviors and substance misuse in individuals with ADHD. We recognize each person’s journey is unique, and our approach reflects this understanding. We integrate evidence-based therapies, educational support, and a nurturing environment to help individuals regain control over their lives.

If you or a loved one are living with ADHD and an alcohol or substance use disorder, we can help. 

At Beach House’s ADHD treatment center, we believe recovery is possible with the right support and resources. We are here to provide that support, guide you on your path to healing, and empower you to lead a fulfilling life free from the grip of addiction and the challenges of ADHD.

Continue reading to learn more. 

What Is Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

ADHD is a disorder that causes an inability to concentrate on a task, sit still, or regulate impulses. It is frequently first identified in childhood and often persists into adulthood. The dysfunction can also cause uncomfortable bursts of energy and forgetfulness.

While the direct cause of ADHD isn’t fully understood, several factors appear to contribute to its development, including

  • Genetic predisposition
    The most common factor in the development of ADHD is genetics. It is estimated that a parent with ADHD has more than a 50% chance of passing the condition to their children.
  • Prenatal substance exposure
    Some studies have found that fetal alcohol syndrome, tobacco use, or exposure to opioids increases a child’s likelihood of developing ADHD.
  • Brain injury or trauma
    In rare cases, ADHD is seen in people who have experienced a significant brain injury or disease.

Types of ADHD

ADHD is not a one-size-fits-all condition. It presents in various ways and is classified into three primary types (based on the predominant symptoms and behaviors observed). 

These types are

  1. ADHD, Predominantly Inattentive Presentation
    This type is characterized by significant difficulties with attention and focus but without the hyperactivity component.
    Common symptoms include
  • Struggling to pay attention to details or making careless mistakes
  • Having difficulty sustaining attention in tasks or play activities
  • Being forgetful in daily activities
  • Frequently losing items necessary for tasks
  1. ADHD, Predominantly Hyperactive-Impulsive Presentation
    In this type, the predominant symptoms are hyperactivity and impulsivity, without significant issues with inattention.
    Common symptoms include
  • Fidgeting or tapping hands or feet
  • Inability to sit still, especially in situations where it’s expected
  • Talking excessively and blurting out answers
  • Difficulty waiting for one’s turn and interrupting or intruding on others’ conversations or games.
  1. ADHD, Combined Presentation
    The combined presentation is the most common type of ADHD and involves a combination of both inattentive and hyperactive-impulsive symptoms. Individuals with this type of ADHD exhibit symptoms from both categories, making it a more complex form of the disorder.

It’s important to note that ADHD is a spectrum disorder, and the severity of symptoms can vary widely among individuals. Additionally, symptoms can change over time, and children with ADHD may exhibit different symptom profiles as they grow into adulthood. 

ADHD Symptoms in Adults

The following are common signs of ADHD

  • Inability to focus or concentrate on a task
  • Becoming distracted easily
  • Fidgeting
  • Speaking impulsively/saying inappropriate things
  • Losing personal items frequently
  • Forgetting information quickly
  • Inability to complete tasks reliably
  • Poor listening ability
  • Interrupting people
  • Risk-taking behaviors

While the most common signs of ADHD are lack of focus and impulsive behaviors, many people experience symptoms of ADHD differently, making the condition challenging to identify in people who are high functioning in certain respects.

How Are ADHD and Drug Addiction Related?

ADHD and addiction are intertwined, with a significant overlap in their occurrence among individuals seeking treatment for substance use disorders. 

Studies have shown that approximately 25% of adults seeking treatment for a substance use disorder also have a co-existing ADHD condition. This dual diagnosis can present complex challenges in the treatment and recovery process.

Individuals with ADHD often grapple with difficulties that lead to academic or occupational struggles, strained relationships, and a heightened risk of engaging in risky behaviors, including substance misuse. Many people with ADHD may turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with their ADHD symptoms, seeking temporary relief or a sense of control over their cognitive and emotional challenges.

The use of substances can quickly evolve into a harmful pattern of addiction, further complicating the management of ADHD symptoms and perpetuating the cycle of substance misuse. 

Furthermore, some of the most common medications used to treat ADHD—Adderall and Ritalin, for example—have a significant potential for addiction. In some instances, people prescribed medications for the disorder develop a dependency.

Untreated ADHD and Substance Abuse

People with untreated ADHD are more likely to develop substance use disorders during childhood and adolescence. In fact, emerging research suggests that children with ADHD are significantly more likely to develop substance use disorders than their peers who do not have the condition. 

Because ADHD can cause people to struggle in social situations, they might turn to alcohol or other mood-altering substances to relax. Addiction can occur when a person with ADHD begins to rely upon substances to navigate work or social situations effectively.

Proven Methodologies for ADHD Treatment in Adults

Effective treatment for ADHD in adults involves a combination of evidence-based strategies to manage symptoms, improve daily functioning, and enhance overall well-being. 

Some standard treatment options include

  • Medications, such as stimulants (e.g., methylphenidate and amphetamine-based drugs) and non-stimulants (e.g., atomoxetine)
  • Behavioral therapies, particularly cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) and dialectical-behavior therapy (DBT)
  • Psychoeducation
  • Coaching or skills training programs that can teach adults practical skills for organization, time management, goal setting, and task completion
  • Lifestyle modifications, including regular exercise, a balanced diet, sufficient sleep, and stress management techniques
  • Support groups
  • Mindfulness and meditation

Effective ADHD treatment often involves a personalized combination of methodologies tailored to an individual’s specific needs and circumstances. It’s important to consult a healthcare provider specializing in ADHD to determine the most suitable treatment plan for you. 

Personalized ADHD and Addiction Treatment at Our ADHD Treatment Center in Florida

At Beach House, we offer evidence-based mental health treatment in Florida that may include medically supervised detox and a broad spectrum of intensive therapeutic interventions that give people the tools they need to manage their mental health effectively. 

Our team offers in-depth experience treating the co-occurring disorders that drive ADHD and addiction behaviors.

To learn about our treatment programs for ADHD and addiction, please contact our compassionate and helpful admissions counselors today.