What is Addiction?

“A condition of having no control over a particular substance, thing, or activity is called Addiction”. An addiction is anything we do to avoid feeling discomfort or emotional pain. When we feel depressed, anxious, or otherwise uncomfortable we humans tend to turn to something to make us feel better.

It is a state of being dependent on a substance, which is harmful or dangerous for the physical and mental health of the person and for his social and economic well-being. Addiction has not only to do with physical substances such as alcohol, drugs, tobacco, and chocolate but also to do with things like mobile phones, internet, Tele-serials etc.

A habit into Addiction:

What is the difference between a habit and an addiction?

  • Addiction – there is a psychological/physical component; the person is unable to control the aspects of the addiction without help because of the mental or physical conditions involved.
  • Habit – it is done by choice. The person with the habit can choose to stop, and will subsequently stop successfully if they want to. The psychological/physical component is not an issue as it is with an addiction.

Putting it in simple words – with habit you are in control of your choices, with an addiction you are not in control of your choices.

Hallmark of Addiction – “The person loses his/her control over the substance/behavior and mostly importantly they are aware of their lost of control.”

Types of Addictions:

Substance Addiction which has to do with physical substances such as Drug, Alcohol, tobacco etc.

Some of the common Substance addictions include the following:

  • Alcohol Addiction,
  • Nicotine Addiction,
  • Cocaine Addiction,
  • Heroin Addiction,
  • Marijuana Addiction,
  • Steroid Addiction,

Of late, I have been getting calls from people who are addicted to whitener, black-board chalk, red brick, soap, mud, etc.

Behavioral Addiction which has to do with things like gambling, sex, pornography, shopping, exercising and also include abnormal Eating behavior. A considerable number of psychologists, other health care professionals and lay people now insist that psychological dependency, as may be the case with gambling, sex, internet, work, exercise, etc. should also be counted as addictions, because they can also lead to feelings of guilt, shame, hopelessness, despair, failure, rejection, anxiety and/or humiliation.

Some of the Common Behavioral addictions include the following:

  • Gambling,
  • Foods,
  • Pornography,
  • Work,
  • Sex,
  • Love addiction
  • Exercising,
  • Video games,
  • Shopping,
  • Mobile Phones,
  • Internet,
  • Social Networking sites such as Facebook, Twitter etc