Understanding Behavioral Addictions

a woman concerned about her loved one's behavioral addictions

One can have many kinds of addictions, not just addiction to drugs or substances. Behavioral addictions can be equally debilitating, and they can affect the quality of life of the addict.

In theory, people can get addicted to many seemingly healthy habits to the point where they affect their productivity or daily life activities. They will seek out more opportunities to engage in the behavior, sometimes at the expense of their career, relationships, and other areas. They also will seek out more opportunities to participate in the action, and this takes a toll on their career, relationships, and other areas of your life.

People with addictive behaviors get a ‘high’ that is almost the same as highs from substance use, which leads them to continue engaging in the behavior despite adverse consequences. Fortunately, there are addiction treatment programs that can help. Call Kemah Palms today today for more information.

Types of Behavioral Addictions

Gambling disorder is the only behavioral addiction that is accepted in the world of professional psychiatry and psychology. Even the experts disagree on the behaviors that qualify as addictive behaviors.

In the normal world, however, certain addictive behaviors have been accepted as addictions. Habits like sex addiction, shopping addiction, self-injury addiction, and multiple plastic surgeries are a few of the more controversial ones.

A few other examples of common behavioral addictions include:

  • Gambling addiction
  • Internet addiction
  • Video game addiction
  • Food addiction
  • Exercise addiction
  • Work addiction
  • Love addiction
  • Porn addiction
  • Tattoo addiction

Even though they have not been accepted into mainstream psychology and psychiatry, over-indulging in any of these behaviors should be a real cause for concern.

Behavioral addictions are considerably challenging to change, and many people experience failed attempts when trying to quit these habits. Some are unable to stop themselves, even if they want to. If you find yourself or a loved one in this position, please seek addiction treatment to get the behavior under control.

Signs of Behavioral Addiction

It is essential to understand addiction’s process and signs that you or your loved one is rolling down a hill towards complete addiction. Generally, when a habit becomes an addiction, it may work the same way as substance addictions, such as:

  • Spending large blocks of time in an activity, and ignoring other more important tasks
  • Neglecting relationships, responsibilities or work in favor of the activity
  • Undermining trust or lying about the activity
  • Putting pressure on loved ones to cover up or make up for difficulties from the activity
  • Engaging in risky behavior to participate in the activity
  • Being dependent on this activity to feel normal or using it as an escape from unpleasantness

Just like drug and substance addictions, you may experience ‘withdrawal symptoms’ when trying to stop or cut back on addictive behavior. A person may struggle with depression, restlessness, or anxiety. In addition, they may become unable to focus, irritable, or aggressive when they try to stop.

Get Help for Behavioral Addiction at Kemah Palms

At Kemah Palms Recovery®, we have a wide range of programs to treat behavioral addictions. The dual diagnosis treatment program can help resolve any underlying mental health conditions that led to the addictive behavior. We also have individual, group, and family therapy sessions to help talk through some of your challenges and rebuild relationships destroyed by the destructive addiction. These programs, support, and medical interventions offer the best outcomes for our patients.

If you feel unable to control a particular habit, you might have, please reach out to a professional and your closest family and friends. There’s no shame in looking for addiction treatment. Contact Kemah Palms today and let us set you on the road to self-control and fulfillment.