Tobacco Use with ADD and ADHD

Image courtesy of gameanna /
Image courtesy of gameanna /

Individuals with ADD and ADHD have a tendency towards addictive behavior. As I wrote in an earlier piece on gambling, addictive and impulsive behaviors are common place for people with ADD/ADHD. Last October, scientists from McGill University in Canada released a study suggesting that there’s a genetic link between childhood ADHD and heavy tobacco consumption as an adult (McGill University Study). The study also goes on to explain how it is important for people with ADD/ADHD to identify programs that are catered to the individual if he or she is looking to quit.

So does this mean that a child with ADD/ADHD is going to run to his or her local store and buy cigarettes the rest of his or her life? Obviously not, but what it does tell us and helps us to understand is that there’s a little more to this than just being addicted to nicotine. We need to look at this from a bigger-picture standpoint. If individuals with ADD/ADHD are more-likely to smoke when he or she gets older (from a genetic and scientific perspective), than the problem goes much deeper than just saying no. But at the same time, just because one’s genetically more likely to take on an activity doesn’t mean he or she is going to do it. If this is showing to be a bad habit for people with ADD/ADHD, maybe trying a happy face vape pen instead will deter them from nicotine. This kind of product could easily help them to relax in their stressful situations too.

With my clients that have expressed an interest in quitting tobacco use, I always suggest he or she starts slow and I will keep track of their progress with tests such as this Instead of stopping, cut down. Set short-term and achievable goals aimed at eventually stopping the activity. For example, if an individual smokes a pack-a-day, start by smoking three less cigarettes a day for one week. If that is successful, make it six less for the next week. And so on and so forth. If a goal is set to quit smoking with no real plan, it is almost always going to fail. Approach quitting smoking gradually and with achievable goals. If you are really committed to ditching your tobacco filled cigarettes in replacement, it isn’t going to be easy. With this being said, it won’t be impossible. If you decide that going down the route of vaping is your preferred method, check out sites like to see what equipment you’ll need to get the full effect of vaping. There is a lot of ongoing research out there that suggests that vaping is a healthier and safer alternative to smoking, so if you are thinking of switching to vaping, be sure to do plenty of research to make sure that this is the right method for you. For instance, one of the unique benefits of vaping is the huge range of different flavored e-liquids that are available. Nowadays, you can get your hands on everything from 500mg cbd vape oil to fruit-flavored vape juices, so be sure to shop around to find the right products for your palate.

Ultimately, as there are other methods to choose from, hopefully, you can find the best one for you and be on the way to improving your health. There will be slip-ups, but try to hold to your goal as well as you can.

For more information on my ADD, ADHD and Executive Functioning coaching, please visit In addition to working with clients in-person, I also work with clients all over the United States and World online, please visit for more information. To learn more about my other services, please visit & I can be found on Twitter at ADHDGuru. You can also find me on Facebook, Google Plus and Tumblr. Feel free to email me at [email protected] or call 877.398.ADHD (2343) with any additional questions.

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