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ADHD medications and DUIs: What you need to know

On Behalf of | Nov 21, 2021 | DUI |

Children aren’t the only ones who can suffer from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Many teens and adults are diagnosed with it as well. 

The medications commonly prescribed to treat it can improve a person’s life significantly. However, they can also affect your ability to drive – potentially for better and worse — and lead to a DUI arrest. A person can face a DUI arrest if they’ve taken any drug that could potentially impair their driving.

Why ADHD meds can impair your ability to drive

When people are getting proper treatment for their ADHD, they can see a significant improvement in their ability to focus and concentrate. When you’re behind the wheel, that increases your safety. However, ADHD medications contain stimulants. These can cause some people to drive too fast, take unnecessary risks and otherwise drive unsafely – particularly if they’ve taken more than the prescribed amount or mixed their ADHD meds with another drug (even an over-the-counter one) or alcohol.

Just this month, a Georgia ambulance driver was arrested after a crash that killed the person he was transporting to the hospital in Fulton County. The driver reportedly admitted to having taken Adderall as well as drinking and smoking marijuana prior to going off the road and rolling over in a ditch. 

Simply taking your medication as prescribed (without mixing it with anything else) may have no negative effect on your ability to drive. However, it’s crucial to determine how it affects you before you get behind the wheel. 

If you are pulled over for suspected DUI, even if you haven’t consumed any alcohol or taken any illegal drugs, don’t volunteer the fact that you take ADHD meds to the police until you’ve sought legal guidance.