: a strong and harmful need to regularly have something (such as a drug) or do something (such as gamble).
: an unusually great interest in something or a need to do or have something.
I am a little intrigued as to when are you addicted, how long does it take before you are considered an addict. According to the definition above you can become addicted to basically anything, would this mean that we all will have our small little addictions without noticing?
When are you addicted:
If you are suffering from an addiction you have no control over what you do, take or use. It will affect your life, the people around you and your work negatively. Addiction will have an influence on your brain. Some people will say that addiction is a chronic brain disease that causes people to lose their ability to resist a craving, despite the negative effect it has on their everyday life.
The most common known addictions are:
- Alcohol; It is a legal substance for adults. It is available in high amounts. Prolonged and excessive use could lead to a problem with addiction.
- Smoking; A lot of people are guilty of this addiction although most people might not see it as an addiction. Technically you are not addicted to the cigarette but to the nicotine that is in the cigarette. Nicotine is highly addictive therefore it is so hard to stop smoking.
- Drugs; On prescription or illegal. Repeated use can alter the way the brain works and functions and therefore cause problems at work or/and home.
- Gambling; A compulsive activity where the individual is unable to stop. Even-though it is causing problems.
There is one thing all addictions have in common; it will affect your personal life negatively. Depending on how severe the addiction is you might lose friends, family or even yourself. Addictions will sneak up on you and not every addiction is as bad as the other.
Let’s look a little bit more into…
Alcohol is a legal substance therefore it might be hard to notice the fine line of addiction. Like said above an addiction will affect your life negatively. A few signs of alcohol addiction are;
- You cannot stop drinking or control how much you drink.
- You need to drink more to get the same effect.
- You have withdrawal symptoms when you stop drinking.
There are more signs to recognize alcoholism, please click here.
I am myself guilty of this addiction.
What is nicotine?
The tobacco plant uses nicotine as a natural protection. It protects the plant from being eaten by insects. Nicotine is a natural insecticide. A few signs of nicotine addiction are:
- You can’t stop smoking.
- You keep smoking despite health problems.
Please click here for more information about nicotine addiction.
There are various drugs on the market with new ones coming out once in a while. I will not go into it as much as it is such a widespread topic. However there are many people who are able to use drugs without it becoming a big issue for their everyday life. It is not easy overcoming a drug addiction and it does not only take willpower to get past the addiction. Drugs will alter your brain in ways we can only understand until a certain level.
A few signs of drug addiction:
- You take drugs to avoid or relieve withdrawal symptoms.
- You abandon activities you used to enjoy.
- You use drugs while it is hurting you.
Please click here for more information.
A gambling problem that is severe would be if gambling is all you can think about, it will hurt you, your family and will hurt you financially. However gambling is a problem if it causes problems.
A few signs of gambling addiction:
- Loss of control over the time spend on gambling.
- Loss of control over the money spend on gambling.
- Developing an emotional dependency on gambling.
Please click here for more signs.
A list of addictions, unusual or taboo:
- Hair pulling.
- Video games.
- Sex addiction.
- Music addiction.
- Internet addiction.
- Plastic surgery.
- Tanning addiction.
- Piercing/tattoo addiction.
- Animal hoarding.
- Lying, compulsive.
Understanding an addict:
Do not forget that an addicts brain will function different then that of someone without an addiction. However in these modern times it is hard to meet someone who has no addictions at all. However according to the definition of addiction anyone could have an addiction without even knowing it.
You will not be able to fully understand an addict as there are various factors in play. Every addict is a different person with a different background and response differently to their addiction. Therefore it is important you look into a certain addiction so you will be able to understand it better.
My conclusion after looking into addiction is that it is hard for people to get over addictions. It sounds harder than I always thought it would be. Willpower alone is not enough, they need a support base and the right person or organisation to assist/help them. It will always be a difficult and maybe sensitive topic however I do hope people will realize that most likely everybody has some sort of addiction. So bear that in mind when you talk badly about people who are addicted and remember their brain is part of it to.