Addiction Studies

Understanding Addiction

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Wilma Gonzalez

Why You Need Quit Smoking


According to Psychiatrist Andrew Tapper, “Smoking is highly prevalent in people with other substance-use disorders, suggesting a potential interaction between nicotine and other drugs of abuse.” When was the last time you smoke and felt terrible about it? Are you tired of suffering from the adverse effects of your smoking addiction? Have you realized that the amount of money you spend on cigarettes is too big already? If you answered yes to all these, then there is a necessity on your part to consider quit smoking today. Keep in mind that the decision to let go of a negative habit is not going to be easy. You will find it hard to focus, especially if you have to the idea of where to begin or how to do it the right way.


Above anything else, the first thing that you must focus on is the need to determine the top reasons why you need to stop smoking. In this article, we are going to share with you some of the reasons that can convince you to let go of your smoking addiction. The process is not going to be easy, but every single step that you take is going to be worth it. Make sure to familiarize yourself with these reasons:


It Can Be Bad For Your Health


One of the most prominent reasons for getting rid of cigarettes is because of the adverse effects that it can give to your physical health. When you keep on smoking, it is as if you are providing poison to your body. The harmful chemical found in cigars, called nicotine, can cause illnesses on your part. Unfortunately, this toxic substance can also lead to severe complications to one’s overall wellness.


It Can Be A Costly Vice


Keep in mind that the national government has already imposed a large amount of taxes to certain items or products such as cigarettes. The primary reason for increasing the said amount is to encourage consumers from buying these harmful goods. As such, when you spend your money on cigars, you will realize that you are paying more than what you are getting. As a result, you will end up paying or squandering your hard-earned money on something that does not offer any value at all.


It Can Cause Harm To Others


Another thing that you must never forget about smoking is that it can be dangerous not only to your health but to everyone around you. A recent study shows that second-hand smoke can be more harmful compared to first-hand smoke. As a result, you are more likely to cause severe harm or troubles to the people you love when you keep on smoking. For example, if you puff a cigarette at home, there is a tendency that you can affect your loved one. That’s why psychologists need to take an active role in helping smokers quit,” says Timothy Baker, PhD.




“You’ve tried to kick the habit before. But that just means you’re in a stronger position to try again,” says psychologist David Coleman, who charts his own battle with nicotine addiction. Always think of yourself so that you will become more motivated in deciding to let smoking go for good. At the same time, you must also think of your loved ones. As already mentioned above, they can also suffer from the adverse consequences of the second-hand smoke. Keep in mind that you can quit smoking. What is crucial is that you are dedicated to making it happen.


Top Reasons Why Teenagers Experiment With Alcohol And Drugs

The adolescent years are known to be the experimentation and self-exploration phase. Because of this, parents find themselves confused about how they can fulfill their role properly.  Parenting at this stage might be a little tricky since this is the part where teens pick up vices, such as taking drugs and drinking. Therapists say that the first step into protecting your child is to understand why they involve themselves with these things. According to Marie Hartwell-Walker, Ed.D. ,Many parents don’t talk to their kids about alcohol because they are unaware of how serious the problem is.”

Written here are some of the top reasons why teenagers experiment with alcohol and drugs. It is essential for the family, especially parents, to understand all of these reasons to remedy the dangers of these vices. 

Effect Of Popular Media

The digital age has contributed various advancements in the modern world today. However, we cannot remove the fact that it has also its disadvantages. For one, popular media has opened the eyes of the teenagers regarding the presence of such vices. There are also instances that these situations are presented to the audience as if it is a healthy and acceptable thing to do. 



According to a study by therapists in 2012, 45 percent of teenagers agree with the statement, “TV shows and movies send a message that doing drugs and alcohol is an ok thing to do.” This experiment clearly shows the power of popular media. 

Peer Pressure

According to University of Maryland developmental psychologist Dr. Melanie Killen, “Peer group pressure begins in elementary schools, as early as age nine. It’s what kids actually encounter there on any given day.”

Some peers influence their friends to drink alcohol and take drugs because they want companionship. Most teenagers cave into this pressure because the emotional high from doing activities which are forbidden and thrilling can be at its peak. This level of excitement and happiness can increase even further if they are in a group of people. 



Lastly, some teenagers want to feel accepted. It is hard for them to say no to these kinds of things because of the fear of being outcasted. The best way to deal and counter this problem is to establish to the kids the importance of having friends who are good influences and who will keep them on the right track. 


Yes, you read it right. Some teenagers involve themselves with these vices because they are bored. Those who are having trouble keeping themselves occupied or who cannot tolerate being alone are usually the primary candidates for substance abuse. They feel that marijuana, drugs, and alcohol can serve as their companion, will keep their mind occupied, or help fill the void and sadness that they are feeling. 

Curiosity And Ignorance

The National Council Against Drug Abuse’s Perception Survey found out that one-third of the youth do not fully understand the dangers of taking drugs and alcohol. This statistics is a red flag for parents. Do not assume that children in their adolescent years are aware of the health hazards that these substances carry. It is the role of both the parents and the school to serve as informants and layout these precautionary measures. 


Studies revealed that rebellious teens use substances based on their personalities and emotions. 

  • Alcohol – Alcohol is the choice of teenagers who are angry with the world. These drinks enable him or her to behave aggressively and release all of their inner emotions. 
  • Meth – Meth is for those who want to pour their disgust over something. This substance can also bring out their violent behavior, which is far worse than the dangers of alcohol. 
  • Marijuana – Marijuana is something that people try to be playful and show that they don’t care about the world. 
  • LSD and Hallucinogens – These are for people who feel misunderstood, out of place, and those who are longing to escape this cruel world. 
  • Smoking – Smoking is for teenagers who want to flaunt their independence to their parents.

Trying To Be An “Adult”

Some teenagers correlate drugs and alcohol to adulthood. They feel that once these substances are tried out, they will look cool and feel grown up. Perhaps these individuals see this kind of acceptability from his favorite movie stars and close friends. At the same time, they might also be just copying their parents if they frequently see them smoke or drink. 

Lack Of Confidence


Many teenagers believe that alcohol and drugs are the shortcuts for building up confidence. For example, if you are tasked to dance but you’re a terrible dancer, or you have to sing a solo on a play, but you have stage fright, these substances can loosen your inhibitions.

There is no single reason why teenagers engage themselves with these substances. It can be a combination of two or more of the statements above. If you are a parent reading this, however, you have to study and specify which core issues are your child exhibiting. Pinpointing the correct one will enable you to craft the perfect strategies to steer your teenager away from these harmful things. Ultimately, only you can walk the path of recovery, but the support groups and people you have around you are a wonderful and incredibly essential tool in helping you help yourself,” said Cindy Nichols, an intervention specialist and treatment advisor.

Addicted To Extreme Dieting? Psychology Experts Say That’s Bad For You

Psychology experts are not the type of professionals that people should go to when they have fitness questions, but they cannot help but get involved in the diet of some patients. The reason is that a few mental health illnesses affect or are somehow related to the eating habits of troubled individuals. When you are depressed, for instance, you may allow days to pass without consuming foods as you may be too deep in your head to even entertain hunger. If you have anger management issues, the emotion may cause you to lose your appetite often. Of course, when there is an eating disorder, your relationship with food may be too strained. “The food you eat can have a direct effect on your energy level, physical health, and mood. A “healthy diet” is one that has enough of each essential nutrient, contains many foods from all of the basic food groups, provides the right amount of calories to maintain a healthy weight, and does not have too much fat, sugar, salt, or alcohol,” as stated by Carol A. Gooch,M.S., LPC, LCDC, LMFT.


One problem that people do not always talk about, though, is an addiction to extreme dieting. It is not as prevalent as substance abuse; you may not even hear folks mention it a lot. However, there may be times when you meet a friend after months of not seeing him or her, and you notice an excessive drop in his or her weight. Every time you see this friend and invites him or her lunch, though, he or she often uses fasting as an excuse for not wanting to eat. Then, you may start to wonder, “Isn’t this person dieting too much?”

The Truth About Extreme Diets

Extreme dieting is a form of diet that is most popular among individuals who are looking for a shortcut to achieve their weight-loss goals. It entails that someone does everything within their power to avoid consuming too many calories every day. This person tends to engage in high-intensity training programs as well or stay in the gym for hours while practically fasting or depriving himself or herself of nutritious foods.

The upside of following an extreme diet is that the weight reduction takes place at an incredible rate. If you keep on working out and only eat a banana, after all, it is inevitable for you to lose weight fast. Despite that, the primary disadvantage of doing extreme dieting is that you are forcing your body to do challenging tasks without topping up its energy reserves. The more you do it, therefore, the more you’ll exhaust your system, to the extent that you may deal with fainting spells one day.


Telltale Signs That You May Be Addicted To Extreme Dieting

Like I’ve said earlier, addiction to extreme dieting is not commonly talked about among families or circles of friends. One person may take note if the other seems to avoid overeating, but people seldom associate the issue with the condition that is as real as addiction.

Considering you are worried that you or a loved one is addicted to extreme dieting, here are some of its telltale signs.

1. Showing Inflexibility When It Comes To Food Choices

The first indication that you may be experiencing addiction towards this form of diet is that you only want to eat the same foods for a while. Say, you think that you can lose weight faster than ever if you consume grilled chicken, carrot sticks, and cup noodles throughout an entire month. Even when someone coaxes you to dine out or offers to cover your share, you decline their invitation and stick to the same options.

Showing such inflexibility is exceptionally unhealthy. For one, the said food choices can only provide certain nutrients, and more varieties can provide more vitamins and minerals. You may develop an addiction to junk foods as well because of the cup noodles, which is junk food.


2. Doing Detox Too Much

Juice cleanses, and water therapy have become popular recently as the liquid diet allows the body to get rid of toxins naturally. The thing is, such methods are merely recommended to be done for several days because they cannot provide all the nutrition that your system needs to function well. In case a month has already passed, and you are still drinking instead of eating your food, you should re-evaluate your choices.

3. Punishing Slipups With Overexercising

When a non-addicted woman who is supposed to be on a low-carb diet ends up finishing half of a big cheesecake, she may say, “Oh, that’s okay. I’m human; I can eat whatever I want once in a while.” She won’t berate herself over or try to get the food out of her system in any way possible.

If someone who is addicted to extreme dieting eats more than what she has set for herself, though, she may feel angry at herself. Instead of purging, this person tends to add an hour or two to her regular gym time to burn off the calories that she has consumed. It may not matter whether her arms and legs are about to give off; what’s important is that she sweats off the extra pounds that the slipup has brought. As what Joe Koelzer stated, “Don’t let over-exercise or any other behavioral addiction keep you off the path of living your purpose. Yes, you have a fire inside of you … so use it to shine.”

Final Thoughts

Dieting can result in positive things if you do it correctly. According to psychologists Lawrence Robinson, Jeanne Segal Ph.D., and Robert Segal, M.A., “Eating a healthy diet is not about strict limitations, staying unrealistically thin, or depriving yourself of the foods you love. Rather, it’s about feeling great, having more energy, improving your health, and boosting your mood.” Not only will it allow you to lose weight, but you can also feel your confidence level go up every time you shed a pound. However, if you commit to extreme dieting and get addicted to it, you may start having problems physically and mentally. So, try to look for other ways to lose weight now. Good luck!

Help For Kids With Drug-Addicted Parents



No matter how old we are, as children, we are greatly influenced by those who raise us. They don’t only include genetics through our biological parents but the habits, mannerisms, values, and behaviors that we see and learn from adults around us as well. This pattern also applies to how we consume alcohol and drugs. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, there is an estimated 25% of American children that grow up in homes where substance abuse and the accompanying depression and anxiety symptoms are prevalent. In households where there are two or more adults that abuse drugs and alcohol, kids have two times the likelihood of being addicts themselves.

These kids are more likely to show:

  • Behavioral and emotional problems
  • Poor academic performance
  • Decreased self-esteem
  • Increased risk of sexual, verbal, and physical abuse
  • Increase risk of having anxiety and depression
  • More likelihood of developing addictive behaviors once they use alcohol or drugs

On the contrary, kids can have a tremendous impact on addicted adults especially if they are given access to appropriate resources and support. When kids learn about these support systems and the way to use them to help their parents, for instance, their future can shift positively at the same time help their parents go through the recovery process.


Children Helping Their Addicted Parents 

In a typical parent-child relationship, it is the parent’s responsibility to care for his/her child. He provides shelter and financial and emotional support for the growing child. When the parent is addicted, however, the roles become reversed, forcing the child to assume the role of the parent, sometimes not even aware that they have already taken the role. Some obligations that children may do include helping his drunk father clean the living room after drinking and partying with his friends and getting a job to pay for some of the bills or buying groceries.

There are also responsibilities that may hinder the child from allowing him to grow like a normal individual. This include:

  • Not going to school activities because he needs to stay home and take care of his father who is feeling insecure and isolated.
  • Listening to his mom telling stories about how she was bad when she was high
  • Sleeping beside a drunk dad or mom who is currently having anxiety, phobia, or depression
  • Going into drugs or alcohol with an older guardian to be able to reach out and bond


In all the scenes mentioned, the child is obliged to step up to a more mature level that is too high for him normally. Addicted parents frequently disregard their children’s emotional boundaries, and this turns the child into a seasoned caregiver with insufficient social skills and no sense of identity. The Partnership for Drug-Free Kids stated that mental and emotional stress afflicts children who have to care for their parents and them as well, harming their brain development in the long term. Additionally, these children will have to find ways to fend for themselves, as their addicted parents are mentally and physically absent. They also don’t like to bring their friends to their home because they are embarrassed that their friends might see their addicted parents. Consequently, their social and personal lives are so restricted that they don’t have strong relationships with friends and significant others. When individuals experience their world as particularly threatening and unsafe, their risk of emotional distress and mental illness escalates,” says Lyn Yonack, MA, MSW, BCD-P.


Help Outside The Home

Kids of addicted parents or caregivers feel discouraged and hopeless, and they are hesitant to talk about their worries and concerns with other adults. Perhaps it is because they know that their parents get furious or abusive to them if they know that their child is telling someone about them. These addicted parents are also afraid that if their addiction is exposed, they might lose custody of their children.

For those more assertive children and those who have more support system, they are encouraged to seek help through these suggestions.


  • Tell And Adult. Think of one adult that you can trust and confide in and respect. It could be your teacher, an uncle or aunt, or a neighbor. Tell them about how you feel – whether you’re afraid, angry, frustrated – and ask help from them. Healing requires patience, understanding, safety, and validation,” according to Sharie Stines, Psy.D.


  • Don’t Avoid Your Friends. You may be embarrassed or scared of what might happen at home, but keep in mind that you must communicate and stay connected to your friends. Don’t get rid of them because you’ll need them in your toughest times. Keep your closest people updated with your situation.


  • Write Your Experiences In A Journal. It’s been proven time and time again that writing how you feel is a great way to alleviate your negative emotions and help you work through your frustrations and fears. Keeping a journal is also a means for you to remember things that happened in your life, which led you to decide to seek help. According to Steven Stosny, Ph.D. , “Journaling can have a positive effect on your behavior and well being if it makes you step back and evaluate your thoughts, emotions, and behavior.”


  • Remember That You’re Not To Blame. Don’t feel guilty about your addicted parent’s drug or alcohol abuse. You are not the cause of the addiction. You don’t have control over your parent or adult caregiver. You can help them by reaching out to others for help, but you alone cannot cure them.



You might be feeling overwhelmed and embarrassed and afraid, but stop yourself. Instead, think of your rights as a child or a teenager and say them to yourself: I have the right to seek help. I have the right to voice out. I have the right to want to be safe. I have the right to be loved.



6 Types Of Medication Which Cause Anxiety Disorder

“Anxiety is a normal, predictable part of life,” said Tom Corboy, MFT. Substance or medication-induced anxiety refers to a disorder which is caused by either alcohol, drugs, or medication. Yes, it is normal to experience some small levels of stress in certain phases of life, which are usually caused by our stressor, but this anxiety gets worse with the intake of either of the three things mentioned above. Continue reading 

How Reading Fitness Books Can Save You From Anxiety And Exercise Addiction

Some secrets should stay buried deep in our thoughts – too deep that even if someone tries to break your skull open will merely get anxiety and still not be able to find it. An example of it can be that time on your 8th grade when you passed gas loudly during Chemistry class and blamed the sound vehemently on the squeaking chair. Or those days when you were silently collecting clippings of your favorite boy band while all at once trying to appear that you are too cold to idolize anybody else. Or that disastrous lopsided haircut that you got from your mom, but you acted as if it was the latest hairstyle. Yeah, well-played, man.

All jokes on the side, if you are privy of any secret – anything at all – that everyone can benefit from, you should allow it to spread like the smoke emitted by an atomic bomb. After all, we have been reminded continuously as kids by our old man or woman that any comment we let slip out of our mouth should only be based on real facts. Truth is what’s supposed to set you free, after all. According to Tom Corboy, MFT, “meditation, yoga, or other calming practices can help minimize anxiety in both the short and long term.”


Nevertheless, in case you are struggling to find the most effective way to unshackle yourself from those annoying fats in your body, it is advisable to start reading fitness books before trying a new diet or going to the gym.  Engaging in enjoyable activities helps to soothe your anxiety. For instance, today, you might take a walk, listen to music or read a book”, Marla Deibler, PsyD For one, you won’t be doubting your actions and asking yourself if you’re on the right path. Furthermore, you won’t develop exercise addiction, which is a problem that folks rarely speak of.

Here are more benefits of doing so that have been found also in websites like

Understand Science Behind Muscle Gain (Or Lack Thereof)

You do not have to be a scientific wiz to realize why even after years and years of spending quality time in the fitness center, your ribs still look as if they are going to come out or your love handles are ruining your chances of meeting “the one.” Often, it is regardless of how much time you use up to lift weights or make protein shakes.

The primary reason is that everything has something to do with your genetic makeup. Some folks manage to lose or gain weight quickly, while others cannot. You ought to understand how your body functions to know the best way to generate muscles.

Not Workout Till You Drop

The only time you will see people crying in a gym is when they are either too frustrated with themselves or their trainer is making them work with various equipment for hours without end. We know that the instructors are merely doing what they think provides the most results; thus, they like pushing their trainees’ limits. However, they tend to forget sometimes that John cannot be Simon or vice versa. A method that works for one person may not be useful for the next fellow.

Besides, anyone who has worked out till they dropped from exhaustion has not attained the kind of physique that women drool over and other men envy. That is why some people have invented high- and low-intensity programs: to give everyone a chance to exercise at their own pace. Otherwise, you might get too exhausted, to the point that you let go of your dreams of having a healthier body.

Bulk Up In Two Months Or So

If the thought of achieving bulky muscles in two months intimidates you, maybe it is because you are getting encouragement and tips from individuals who think they understand muscle building better than anyone. They tend to say, “Hey, eat this thing” or “Oh, try this routine!”, but you do not notice a difference in your physique. Then, you might start wondering about what’s wrong with you.

What you need is the guidance of an expert whose experience was gained first-hand and whose ideas are quite diverse from what we are used to. Keep in mind that you can defy the norms sometimes, especially if the common beliefs are not working to your advantage.


Control Your Muscle Gain

While some men hit the gym because they want to look like Arnold Schwarzenegger during his bodybuilding days, others only wish to be no longer compared with bamboo sticks or ten-wheelers. Well, whichever your goal is, you may be able to achieve it with the help of a fitness guide that may also contain some convenient ways to control the amount of muscle that you gain.

Considering you are not aware of how muscles grow, you should know that the muscle fibers tear and repair themselves after heavy training. Instead of binding every piece together, though, they bond with other strands and form bigger muscles. Hence, that dream weight of yours, as well as the six-pack abs that you have only appreciated from afar through the male models or athletes, are now within your reach.

Welcome Back, Self-Confidence

We all know that the driving force behind your efforts of having a well-toned body is your desire to finally be able to stand in front of the mirror with only two emotions. 1) Pride for doing a great job at gaining muscles; and 2) happiness for never hearing any criticism about your size.

Nonetheless, beyond finding a comprehensible fitness program (check for programs here: Babble), knowing that you can welcome your self-confidence back only after a couple of months without getting addicted to exercise is undoubtedly gratifying. According to Margarita Tartakovsky, M.S. , “Anxiety can feel overwhelming. It can feel like chains around your feet, weighing you down. But by taking small steps — like the ones above — you can minimize your anxiety and cope effectively.”

Good luck!


What Makes An Alcoholic?

Alcohol consumption is as old as time wherein historical, and even biblical accounts would narrate the inclusion of alcohol in their daily meal or part of any occasion.  In the story of The Wedding of Cana, Jesus performed a premature miracle of turning water into wine because there was no longer enough supply to offer the guests. It is ever-present when soldiers come home to celebrate a well-fought battle, an Emperor recently conquered a nation, or when treaties are signed; celebrations begin and last with overflowing wine.  




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Do Not Self-Medicate: Alternative Therapy Can Help Reduce Stress (While Recovering From Substance Abuse)


According to the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, a simple way of relaxation can beat all the stressors in life. Stress can bring a significant impact to an individual like increased heart rate, high blood pressure, and depression. Various relaxation techniques like breathing exercises and yoga can help an individual to fight against these stressors in life thus blood pressure and rate go back to normal.

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