Addiction is either behavioural or physical, and in most cases, they go together. Even though tobacco and alcohol are the most common addiction types that are recognized, there are in fact hundreds of scientifically and medically recognized addictions. Compulsions, lifestyle dysfunction, cravings, and not being able to stop all indicate the presence of some form of addiction. People are also addicted to certain types of behaviours as badly as people that have an addiction to substances including hard drugs and alcohol.

Addictive behaviours that arise from these addiction types often result in drastic negative consequences. This includes everything associated with substance use disorders to perils linked with gambling addictions, or even unhealthy sexual behaviour, or compulsive shopping.

Addiction is one of those complex diseases. The addiction type is not that as important as the underlying issues that cause the person to go after a pleasurable feeling which causes them to suffer adverse consequences.

The adverse effects that occur during the onset of addiction will often include relationship issues, destructive behaviour, financial issues, along with negative feelings and thoughts that arise from these things.

Physical Addictions

Addictions that are physical are usually better known. These types of addictions to a substance are either put into the body or ingested. The more common types of physical addictions usually include:

  • Tobacco
  • Alcohol
  • Prescription drugs
  • Opioids
  • Marijuana
  • Cocaine
  • Amphetamines
  • Inhalants
  • Hallucinogens
  • PCP

Physical addictions are typically broken down into 3 categories. These include prescription drugs, illicit drugs, and alcohol.

Addiction to alcohol is the most known and most common. This addiction manifests into alcohol dependency, regular excessive drinking, or binge drinking. Addiction to alcohol typically begins with “social drinking” and then advances further until the person cannot break the addiction.

Illicit drug addiction involves addiction to an illegal substance which causes a short-term brain disruption that results in a change in perception-of-reality. Illegal drugs can result in brain changes that are long-term, along with other organs, which leads to extreme addiction.

Addiction to prescription drugs involves the use of approved medications in ways that a doctor has not prescribed. This issue has become increasingly problematic across the U.S. If you are in Guildford or the surrounding area then you may want to see ‘therapist Guildford‘.

Behavioral Addictions

A behavioural addiction occurs when a person has lost control of how they act so that they can engage in a behaviour that causes a brief feeling of happiness or pleasure. The person starts becoming dependent on these pleasurable feelings caused by these behaviours. This causes them to act compulsively on this behaviour.

Common behavioural addiction types include:

  • Sex addiction
  • Food addiction
  • Pornography addiction
  • Internet addiction
  • Using cell phones and/or computers
  • Work addiction
  • Video game addiction
  • Exercise addiction
  • Work addiction
  • Seeking pain
  • Spiritual obsession (should not be confused with religious devotion)
  • Exercise
  • Cutting
  • Gambling addiction
  • Shopping addiction

If you suffer from impulse control disorders, you are usually prone to compulsive behaviour. This can also result in severe addictions. At the same time, a mental disorder or mental health issue could exacerbate risks associated with behavioural addictions or substance use disorders.

Behavioural and physical addictions are usually linked. More than 50% of people that suffer from an addiction to a single substance will also be abusing other substances. At the same time, a person battling with a substance abuse disorder will also usually suffer from a behavioural addiction at the same time.

There are various similarities between behavioural addiction and substance addiction. Some similarities include a “high” or excitement that results from the behaviour or use, craving a “high”, and developing a tolerance that leads to repeated behaviour or increased use, physical and psychological withdrawal symptoms and loss of control.


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