Addiction is a serious disorder that affects millions of people around the world. It can leave individuals feeling powerless, ashamed, and helpless. Addiction happens when a person becomes physically or psychologically dependent on a substance or activity, despite the negative consequences it has on their life. Addiction can manifest in many different ways, including excessive use, difficulty managing daily life without the substance or activity, and even changes in performance. Examples of substances that are commonly misused include alcohol, cannabis, cocaine, heroin, methamphetamines, club drugs, ecstasy, GHB, ketamine, LSD, PCP, nicotine, and more. If you start to feel dependent on a substance, or if your addiction is starting to affect your daily life, it is important to seek help right away. This could be due to physical withdrawal symptoms or psychological signs such as increased anxiety.
Addiction is often associated with substance abuse and addiction to drugs or alcohol. However, it is important to understand that behaviours can also become addictive. When we talk about behavioural addiction, we are referring to activities that are used excessively to help a person cope with difficult thoughts and feelings. Examples of addictive behaviours include compulsive shopping, gambling, pornography, the internet, eating and more.
When it comes to treating addiction, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT), and Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) are some of the most effective methods. For a deeper look into the underlying causes, Schema Therapy may be recommended. Your psychologist can work with you to uncover the root causes of your addiction and devise better coping mechanisms for dealing with life's challenges. If you have a physical dependence on a substance, it is recommended that you consult a psychiatrist to discuss the possibility of medication to address the physical aspects of addiction. In-patient treatment is often the safest option for detoxing due to the specific needs of individuals in these situations.