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Co-occurring Addictive and Mental Disorders Among Adolescents: Prevalence Research and Future Directions

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co-occurring addictive and mental disorders , comorbidity, addiction, conduct disorder, depression


Paul Greenbaum


This article reviews existing literature on the prevalence of adolescents with co-occurring addictive and mental disorders (COAMD), and emphasizes the need for adolescent COAMD assessment practices that differ methodologically and conceptually from assessment of adults with COAMD. The authors find a wide variability in prevalence, but also note some emerging patterns in the literature, e.g., that conduct disorder and depression are the two most frequently reported co-occurring mental disorders among adolescents with COAMD. Noting that relatively little is known about this population of adolescents, the authors suggest that future studies ought to develop psychometrically valid and reliable assessment instruments, use general population samples, and explore differences between adolescents with COAMD and those with a single-disorder.


Greenbaum, P. E., Foster-Johnson, L., & Petrilla, A. (1996). Co-occurring addictive and mental disorders among adolescents: Prevalence research and future directions. American Journal of Orthopsychiatry, 66, 52-60.