The relationship of ADHD symptoms to gambling behaviour in the USA: Results from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health


The study utilizes data from the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health) to test the extent to which retrospectively reported ADHD symptoms are associated with gambling behaviour in young adults. Results from linear probability and logistic regression models using data from 6145 survey respondents indicate that youths who reported symptoms consistent with Hyperactive-Impulsive type ADHD in childhood were significantly more likely than other youths to report clinical characteristics of disordered gambling, large past-year losses and/or multiple forms of gambling as young adults. The Combined type ADHD had no significant relationship to the gambling indicators, while the Inattentive type ADHD symptoms have a significant negative relationship to the gambling indicators. These findings provide preliminary support in a large, nationally representative sample for the relationship of ADHD and gambling and underscore the importance of addressing gambling-related issues in education, prevention and intervention efforts with youths with ADHD and/or problems with impulse control.

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