Addiction: What It Is and How To Treat It

This is where the addiction begins

Addiction is a behavioral disease characterized by compulsive, uncontrolled, behavioral responses to negative stimuli. These stimuli can be external (medicine), internal (caffeine, alcohol, tobacco) or a combination of both. When addiction develops, it usually starts with a behavior that is not the desired result of the person’s behavior. As the person engages in the behavior, they often feel a certain need that is not fulfilled. They are likely to repeatedly engage in the behavior until it is taken as a serious form of self-satisfaction.

A very important step in the treatment of addiction is discovering what the cause of the addiction is. Most addicts have at least one common factor in their causes of addiction. However, because of the unique characteristics of the human brain, each addiction will be treated differently.

The various treatments include:

When a person is seeking addiction treatment, they should first know what the most common addiction causes are. One of the most common causes for addiction is chronic excessive brain use of certain brain chemicals. Others include chronic physical injury, certain kinds of drug and alcohol abuse, and substance use disorders such as alcoholism. Neurotribes, such as alcoholism and drug use disorders, are treatable through medications and psychotherapy.

Although most addictions take time to become addicted, there are those that quickly become addicted after taking small dosages. For example, caffeine from coffee, tea, soda, or energy drinks quickly become addictive because of the small amounts taken. Also, certain drugs such as amphetamines, LSD, and ecstasy have similar effects on the brain as those substances. The physical actions of taking these substances can create feelings of pleasure, including euphoria, which is often associated with being addicted.

addiction has many different symptoms and causes

Substance use disorders, or substance use addiction, are treatable through psychological counseling and sometimes medications. A substance use disorder can begin as early as childhood or adolescence, although it is more common in adults. This type of addiction is very common and often goes untreated. In some cases, substance use disorders go undiagnosed for years, even decades. Only when the patient becomes an addict does treatment become an option.

Although addiction has many different symptoms and causes, there are some common characteristics that may indicate that you have an addiction. Symptoms of addiction include: persistent cravings, the need to be completely free of the substances or behaviors that cause the cravings, the inability to stop using the substance or behavior, and the continued use despite negative consequences to self or others. There are other symptoms, but these are the most common. If you experience one or more of these symptoms, you should seek help immediately. Addiction is not something that should be ignored or allowed to continue.

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