When people hear the word “addiction”, their minds instantly turn to drugs and alcohol. However, people can be addicted to almost anything. There are people out there who face detrimental addictions to things like television, the Internet, gambling, sex, video games and even food. Each of these things, when they’re allowed to take over your life, can be just as damaging as any substance. No matter your addiction, any addiction is detrimental to your quality of life—to both your physical as well as mental health. Here are five signs that you may have a problem that has turned from an indulgence to an addiction.
It’s natural to want to do things that are enjoyable, but only to a degree. If you constant crave your favorite activity, are always thinking about it and engage in it as often as possible, beware. This could indicate a burgeoning addiction. If you find yourself developing this pattern of chronic indulgence, the first step is realize you are in this type of downward spiral. Once you recognize the times you are maybe over indulging, you can hold yourself back and not allow yourself to get caught up in it.
Money Is No Object
Do you find yourself repeatedly spending beyond your means to indulge a habit? Perhaps you keep dipping into your savings, intending to put the money back in later, but never quite getting to it. You may even find yourself skimping on necessities just so you can feed your addiction. Feeling like money is no object where an addiction is concerned is a big red flag.
As an addiction grows, it can eventually consume a person’s entire life. Soon enough, that’s all they want to do, and everything else becomes unimportant by comparison. Someone with an addiction may start showing up late for work or school, or may fail to show at all. They may begin distancing themselves from friends and family. They can also find themselves neglecting to pay bills or keep their home clean. Drug Rehabsfocus on rehabilitating visitors so that they can get back into normal life and overcome their problems so that they can once again accept and fulfill responsibilities. If your behavior or addiction has cost you your job, relationships, or caused other problems like this in your life, that’s a sign it’s not just an “indulgence.”
Unaddressed Health Problems
Over time, hardcore addictions can create health problems. The damage isn’t just chemical, either. Even seemingly innocuous addictions, Internet or TV addiction, can make you neglect physical needs to the point of causing problems. Sedentary lifestyles, for example, are linked with heart disease, diabetes, obesity and circulatory issues. If your habit is causing you to develop and ignore health problems, it’s important to seek help.
Mood problems are part and parcel of an addiction. When you’re able to indulge it, you may feel content, happy and peaceful. When you can’t, however, you may experience what many call a “withdrawal syndrome”. You might become restless, irritable, anxious, depressed or angry. Withdrawal syndrome also frequently involves repetitive thoughts of the addiction source and a tendency to desperately seek out a “fix”.
Drugs and alcohol aren’t the only things a person can become addicted to, however these are popular addictions that can be the most difficult to overcome. However, in a way, the non-substance addictions can be the hardest to diagnose and treat simply because many of them are considered normal or socially acceptable. However, addiction is a serious problem that requires treatment, so don’t hesitate to get help if you recognize these signs in yourself.