Addiction is a very complex and dangerous situation that millions of Americans suffer from every year. Addiction is a progressive brain disorder that is characterized by chronic compulsive engagement in actions that are harmful to physical, social, and mental health. Current medical research has labeled addiction as a disease because of the chemical changes that occur in the brain. Psychological addiction is an addiction that relates to the mind. When an individual frequently and consistently expose themselves to a specific stimuli, they can develop an addiction to that substance or habit. Psychological withdrawal symptoms have been observed from individuals who:

-eating food with high sugar or fat content
-engage in physical exercise
-sex
-shopping
Psychological addictions have been overlooked in the past, but new technology and systems of study have been able to quantify these addictions.

Psychological Addiction

Psychological addictions are addictions that do not pertain to consuming substances. Drug abuse and addiction have been extensively researched and published. Society understands that chemical dependency and addiction occur because substances change the way the brain and body functions. These changes have dramatic effects on behavior and social actions. Psychological addiction can have the same effects. Psychological addictions are addictions are those of action or practice not including a substance. The most common types of psychological addiction are gambling addiction and sex addiction. These conditions are considered addiction because individuals suffering from them exhibit similar withdrawal symptoms of those suffering from other addictions. These individuals experience sleeplessness, restlessness, depression, anxiety, and most importantly an inability to stop after realizing the damage they are causing.

Psychological Addiction Diagnosis

Like other addictions, psychological addiction is detected and diagnosed by questionnaires like lie/bet. Detecting disorders like these can be more difficult than substance abuse addictions because the characteristics of the addiction are more subtle. Detecting psychological addiction can be difficult, but it is not impossible. Individuals who have a psychological addiction will display very similar behavioral problems as drug addicts. Addiction causes individuals to begin to seclude themselves in a lonely place. Many addicts change friends or stop contact with those to which they are close. Addicts will also continue to abuse their bodies despite the danger they put themselves and do so in dangerous situations. Behavioral problems are the most common and easiest to detect. Individuals who begin to display unnatural anger, frustration, isolation, or other characteristics that are unlike them could be suffering from a psychological addiction.

How Psychological Addiction is Treated

Treating psychological addiction is based on the goal of improving or restoring the quality of life. Treatment should strive to eliminate the negative behavior through abstinence. There are few treatment centers that are specialized in psychological addiction, but all treatment centers use strategies that would help an individual with psychological addictions. Most of these people engage in addictive activities to fill a void they have in their lives. It is essential that treatment finds what the void is, why it was created, and how to fill it with a positive behavior. Understanding the importance and danger of dependency is the first step in helping individuals with psychological addiction. It is paramount that the individual needs of the addict are addressed for successful addiction recovery. Treatment centers focus on creating a unique and detailed recovery plan for each individual. Every addiction is different and must address both the physical and mental needs of the patient. Addiction is most commonly caused by an underlying mental disorder; therefore a dual-diagnosis treatment is pivotal for recovery. If you or someone you know could be suffering from a psychological addiction speaking with a professional or addiction hotline can help in getting the right help.