Table of Contents
ISRN Addiction
Volume 2013 (2013), Article ID 815096, 10 pages
Review Article

Male Adolescent Substance Use Disorder and Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Review of the Literature

Illinois School of Professional Psychology, Argosy University, Schaumburg Campus, 999 Plaza Drive, Schaumburg, IL 60173, USA

Received 7 September 2012; Accepted 16 October 2012

Academic Editors: H. Krampe, M. Naassila, and J. F. Rodriguez-Orengo

Copyright © 2013 Robert Eme. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Approximately, one-third of male adolescents in treatment for a substance use disorder (SUD) also have an Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). This strongly suggests that ADHD is a major risk factor for the development of SUD which practitioners must address if they are to provide adequate treatment for adolescents with SUD/ADHD. This paper supports a causal role for ADHD in the development of SUD and examines the developmental mechanisms whereby ADHD increases risk for SUD. These mechanisms include increased risk for conduct disorder, academic failure, deviant peer affiliation, engaging in risk behaviors, and self-medication. Assessment and treatment recommendations for those comorbid for SUD/ADHD are provided.