For Young People With ADHD, Drug Therapy Does Not Lead to Drug Abuse
"The second component is that the treatment and diagnosis of ADHD has
been beleaguered [by] the same concerns, so the evidence refuting these
assumptions is very encouraging, scientifically and from the public health
perspective as well," Biederman says.
"[It] has been very common practice in the treatment of ADHD to
interrupt treatment during adolescence, [but] adolescence is the period of
heightened risk for substance abuse," Biederman points out. "So
interrupting treatment may be a very bad move, because of the [increased] risk
for substance abuse and [the fact that it] can be [avoided] by appropriate
clinical care. ADHD is a condition that lends itself to risky behavior and
The researchers acknowledge that this study doesn't allow for making
"definitive conclusions regarding the risks associated with [drug] therapy
of ADHD [in people] beyond the age of our current sample, in females, or in
nonwhite subjects." Biederman says that the next step is to follow the
study subjects into their young adult years.