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But there is no increased risk for those whose ADHD symptoms have decreased, according to the study published online recently in the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.
For the study, the researchers analyzed data from 441 children with ADHD and 231 children without ADHD. They were followed from age 7 to 25 as part of a study that involved six centers in the United States and one in Canada.
The investigators looked at participants' ADHD symptoms and driving records, as well as other health conditions. The other conditions included oppositional defiant disorder, conduct disorder, antisocial personality disorder, and substance use during childhood and into adulthood.
Young adults with and without a history of ADHD got driving licenses at similar ages and at similar rates, the findings showed.
"Extant research shows that ADHD is associated with more traffic violations, speeding violations, license suspensions and risky driving behaviors," said study lead author Arunima Roy, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Ottawa in Ontario, Canada.
Roy noted in a journal news release that the likelihood of risky driving increases when childhood ADHD persists into adulthood.
"Prior research from our group as well as by others also shows that, aside from driving behaviors, a persistence of ADHD into adulthood can impair functioning in other domains," Roy said. "These domains can include occupational performance, educational attainment, emotional functioning, substance use and justice involvement."
-- Robert Preidt
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