Addiction, in all of its forms, can be an extremely debilitating and life-altering issue. People have addictions ranging from the more benign, such as a daily cup of coffee, to deadly hard drugs such as heroin. Before you can understand why an individual develops an addiction, you must develop a basic understanding of the affliction’s core definition. Addiction is defined by the medical field as something which produces a physical and psychological need within the sufferer. This definition has been broadened over the past couple of decades to include any type of abnormal dependency on something, including porn addiction, food, exercise and shopping.

The most common forms of addiction revolve around narcotic substances. This is not limited to illegal drugs, however, as cigarettes, caffeine and alcohol addictions are much more prevalent than an addiction to an illegal substance. Those who attempt to go cold turkey from any of their addictions will experience discomfort, both physically and psychologically; withdrawal symptoms are not limited to addicts of hard drugs, although they most certainly do have the most difficult path to recovery.

When determining if a substance or other object in a person’s life has become an addiction, a few factors must be considered. If the person is unable to concentrate throughout the day without partaking in the substance or other object, it is likely that they are addicted to it. If the removal of the substance or object causes the person physical and psychological duress, then it is certain that they are addicted to it. Behavioral addictions, such as compulsive gambling, need to be treated with the same level of concern and understanding as a narcotic addiction. Countless people have ruined their lives due to an addiction that never once relied on them ingesting something into their bodies; for this reason, it is imperative to keep a close eye on others who are exhibiting a possible personality shift.

The American Society of Addiction Medicine categorizes addiction in all of its forms as a disease and this classification and others like it have helped to remove the stigma of seeking treatment. It has also enabled those with drug or alcohol addictions to receive some legal protection from discrimination, as long as they are enrolled in a recovery program. Although most addicts ascribe to the belief that no one can ever be completely cured of their addiction, if they seek proper treatment and then remove all negative influences from their life most former addicts can permanently leave their addictions behind them.



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