Those in the field of addiction recovery are not surprised by the many different and deadly types of addiction that are plaguing our communities.
Defined as a “primary, chronic disease of the brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry,” addiction is characterized by the inability to abstain from usingthe preferred substance, impairment in behavioral control, craving substances, diminished recognition of significant problems with one’s behaviors and interpersonal relationships, and a dysfunctional emotional response. In a nutshell, addiction quickly becomes unmanageable and interferes with everyday life issues.
The types of addiction range from abuse of substances such as alcohol, tobacco, illicit drugs, and inhalants, to impulse control disorders and behavioral addictions such as gambling, sex, eating, working, and shopping. Those who suffer from impulse control disorders and behavioral addictions can have just as much of a hard time abstaining from their addiction as those who are dependent on substances. Given all types of addiction, the first step to recovery is admitting one’s life is unmanageable and that there is a problem.
Treatment for various types of addictions differs depending on the circumstances.
For example, those with a chemical dependency may need to go through a detoxification process before any therapeutic recovery can begin. Those who have a behavioral addiction, such as being a “workaholic,” won’t need to chemically detox but may end up following the same recovery process as that of someone with a substance use disorder. This may include 12-step studies, cognitive behavioral therapy, individual therapy, group therapy, trauma therapy and more.
Whether addicted to a substance or behavior, both are symptoms of underlying issues. With the right recovery treatment, there is hope to live a happy, joyous, and free life.
If you or someone you love is suffering from an addiction, help is available. Reach out to our admissions counselors for information about our programs.
American Society of Addiction Medicine. (2011, April 19). Retrieved October 10, 2016.