Addiction Studies

Understanding Addiction

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Addiction Self-Help & Management

Moderate Versus Excessive Drinking: Know Your Limits

It’s a no-brainer that alcohol should not be taken in excessive amount because it can pose harmful effects to a person’s body and mind. Drinking alcohol is part of our cultural and social practice. In some countries, drinking alcohol is part or included in their everyday diet and not only during special occasions. Medical research even presented the therapeutic effects of drinking certain alcoholic drinks to physical and psychological health.

For example, drinking two glasses of red wine every day can decrease the risk of cardiovascular disorders among women. Moderate drinking of alcoholic drinks can also reduce the risk of having ischemic strokes and diabetes in adults. Despite these positive claims, it is still essential to impart the adverse and harmful effects of alcohol if taken excessively. “Drinking represses the negative emotions that affect the mental well-being of those with diagnosed mental health concerns and those who simply feel emotionally flooded. While it may allow for a short-lived relief from anxiety, depression, or overwhelming feelings, drinking alcohol is not a smart choice in the grand scope of mental well-being,” says Jesse Viner, MD.

 

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Debunking Some Myths About The Alcoholic Anonymous

Alcoholic Anonymous or commonly known as AA forms the cornerstone of treatment and recovery of every alcoholic or individual with problems in addiction. The practice was started in the late 1930s and continues to help every individual with an alcohol problem to recover and live a meaningful and healthy life. This article will bring us closer to understand what goes around when a person enters this exclusive group and myths or fallacies concerning AA shall be corrected.   

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How To Prevent Underage Alcohol Drinking 

Alcohol drinking is undeniably a part of everyone’s culture. Even our television and internet are bombarded with advertisements and subliminal messages that target every household, but teenagers are the vulnerable age group that answers to the invitation of alcohol. It can penetrate teenagers’ mind where the main point of using alcohol shown in commercials is for social benefits. It is a fact that teens still do not have strong intentions to choose what is truly beneficial or not. As long as it satisfies their desires, they will go with it.  “You should know that while alcohol often causes a “good mood” at first, it is a central nervous system depressant. Its depressant effects can carry over into one’s mind, being a contributing factor to a person’s continuing depression,” says Mark Jacob, M.D. 

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When Your Husband Has Video Game Addiction 

When you are in a relationship with a man who finds happiness in playing video games, you are in for an emotional ride. Be prepared for the times he wouldn’t be able to answer your calls or messages. There will be times when he will forget special occasions. And most of the time, he just wouldn’t have time because he would be busy playing video games. When his hobby is already affecting your relationship, it is somewhat an addiction.  

“Gaming disorder is characterized by a pattern of persistent or recurrent gaming behavior (also referred to as digital gaming or video-gaming), that may be primarily conducted over the Internet (online) or primarily conducted not on the Internet (offline),” according to John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

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Psychiatry: The Evaluation Of Patients With Addiction

 

 

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Substance abuse is so widespread that most psychiatrists find it utterly alarming due to the mental health complications it brings. According to Steven Gifford, LICDC, LPC, “For family and friends of drug- or alcohol-addicted individuals, addressing the addiction is one of the most difficult aspects of helping the addicted person seek treatment.” Some conditions are mild while others are severe at some point. Not all people require the same treatment though. Most psychiatrists use different interventions to assess the needs of people with addiction.

Recovery from addiction is more than possible, but requires a person’s strong commitment to change,” says John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

In treating the condition, there are some essential steps that a psychiatrist considers, especially with the different types of people and their diverse cases. According to Kathleen Smith, PhD, LPC, “Effective treatment programs typically utilize peer support (often in the form of group counseling), individual counseling, pharmacotherapy, individualized treatment plans, onsite medical assistance, family involvement, and follow up support to prevent relapse.” We have here the significant guides that can show you how most healthcare professionals address the issue of substance abuse.

Raising The Subject – In a therapy session, the psychiatrist raises the issue and discusses alcohol. It often starts with a straightforward question of ‘how do you occasionally drink or how extreme do you party.’ The process of gathering information from your lifestyle will help the psychiatrist determine what kind of approach applies to your condition.

Providing Feedback – Though it is a fact that alcohol can do almost no harm if moderately taken, the exceeding limit of drinking is unhealthy. You must understand that most psychiatrists will try to explain the danger of too much substance in your body that can affect almost all your daily functions. In most cases, you’ll be able to figure out that some of your mental disorder is somehow related to your addiction. With their feedback, you’ll be able to know the link of your health conditions to your risky kind of lifestyle.

 

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Enhancing The Motivation – A thorough talk is given by the psychiatrist to allow you to understand the positive side of changing your habits. It will help you create a good realization as to when you should consider cutting down your substance abuse or might as well quit doing it for good. In this way, you’ll be able to determine your reason for quitting. It gives you a clear view of what factors you need to know to be able to consider lowering it down. If possible, you’ll have a chance to evaluate yourself and rate the importance of the deliberation.

Making A Plan – The therapy session is beneficial that it contains all the information you need to know as to when you should consider quitting. However, you need to take the initiative to plan on what the first step would be. The psychiatrist can offer you a wide variety of options and treatments such as medication, holistic change, brief counseling, talk therapy, and support groups. It enables a good start of your addiction recovery process.

 

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Follow Up Sessions – A psychiatrist will openly talk about your condition gradually. The process of treatment will follow a particular order that will not compromise your time. You’ll have the option of choosing the best solution that works with your condition. You will not feel stressed or forced by any means.

Substance abuse is something that we should not ignore so it’s better that we seek some excellent advice from those people who can adequately assist us with our needs. We may not feel the urge of asking for help, but if our health is already in danger, we might consider doing something before it’ll be too late.

 

 



Tips For Keeping You Away From Drinking Alcohol – The Best Therapy

 

  

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It’s pretty much self-evident that if you are drinking too much alcohol multiple times a week, it makes a significant impact on your daily productivity. As a matter of fact, even a little bit of alcohol makes a big difference. It impairs your overall health as well as the other areas of your life. Everything that can make you function normally can be affected such as your social skills, physical capabilities, and even mental health.

Truthfully, alcohol addiction is self-explanatory and the more you indulge yourself in the bad habit, the more you’ll experience an overall dysfunction. So how can you be able to help yourself? We have here some best therapy tips for keeping you sober.

 

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Choose The Right Group Of Friends

If you want to get rid of alcohol addiction, it is essential to start with the influence. You have to consider your social group and understand how they affect you. Commonly, you may end up creating bad decisions, but if you are willing to eliminate the bad habit, you will start changing and avoiding the people that don’t help you grow as a person.

Keep Getting Busy

Treating alcohol addiction can be frustrating. The moment you think about it gives you this eagerness to grab a bottle of beer or vodka and eventually, you end up drinking at all cost. However, when you try to remove the temptation and keep yourself busy by doing something else that is more productive and important, it will lessen your desire to drink. Probably, you might even forget why you want it in the first place.

Stay Hydrated

We know that alcohol is soluble, but it doesn’t contain the nutrients that water can give to the body. In fact, drinking it will not keep your body hydrated and will do the opposite instead. The water in your system makes it suitable for you to keep your body away from harm as it flushes out damaging toxins.

Change Your Lifestyle

One way to adequately address your alcohol addiction is by changing your lifestyle. You can start shifting activities from time to time. Instead of sticking in one routine, you can explore different skills, eat healthy foods, travel to different places, and meet new people. You can also involve yourself in different kinds of physical fitness activities that will not only make you forget about drinking but will also make you feel healthy.

Learn To Meditate

For you to be able to assess yourself, you have to be clear about your goals. You might at least want to identify your reasons why you want to quit drinking. From there, learn to meditate and relax. It will allow you to attain fresh and new ideas that can help you motivate yourself to quit your addiction. Valerie Knopik, PhD shares her favorite meditation technique: “I personally love the 10-count meditation, which is simple and effective. You will count each in and out breath until you reach 10 and then start over again.”

Invest Time In Sleeping

Yes, as a matter of fact, sleeping will not only help in rejuvenating your health but will also keep you away from drinking. You’ll eventually feel more satisfied with your body’s full potential compared to what it feels when you are drunk. “Managing stress and ensuring a routine of plentiful, high quality sleep are critical to protecting your health,” said Michael J Breus Ph.D.

 

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These tips are helpful if you will consider them in your life. However, the severity of your addiction may vary, so it’s still better to consult a healthcare professional that is more than willing to help you in your alcohol addiction battle. “Ultimately, it must be the person who is struggling with addiction’s decision to seek out and get help. Family members and friends, however, can offer emotional support for this decision, and ensure the person has access to the resources that will help start down the path to recovery,” said John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

 



We Sought Online Therapy For Our Troubled Teen

Teens today can make you lose your mind! Sometimes, you’ll ask yourself, “What’s happening to this world?” I ask myself that a couple of times a day and a couple more before I go to bed. Could it be from the way we raise our kid or could it be from the culture of this new generation?  

 

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Don’t Gamble Away Your Life: Stop Gambling Addiction

 

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Gambling used to be for fun, to entertain or pass the time, but some people nowadays have turned it into sports, a living, and an addiction.  According to psychologist Elizabeth Hartney, BSc., MSc., MA, PhD , Gambling addiction, also known as pathological gambling, compulsive gambling, problem gambling, or gambling disorder involves maladaptive patterns of gambling behavior that the individual persists with, despite negative consequences.” Rich people gamble away their money because they can afford it. Sadly for some people, gambling is a hope to get more money. They think that they could get richer if they win one time. Then they get the great feeling of power by assuming they are capable of winning, and the excitement whenever they think of it finally happening.

 

Then they lose more than they win, and they keep on coming back with the hope that it’s going to be their lucky day!

 

My name is Brian, and I am a self-confessed gambling addict. I used to live in a peaceful town in North Carolina where my parents grew up. I always dreamed big and hoped to make it to big cities. After I finished college, I hurriedly moved to New York to experience the hustle and bustle. It was all exciting for me. I got myself an apartment and a decent job at a technology company creating software and the like. I have to say life was good to me.

Then after a few years, I met Tatiana. I fell in love with her so deeply, and we went to all the adventures we could get. Finally, we got married in Vegas and how crazy it was to decide to move to the city. She was from Vegas, and her family was running a small diner.

Everything was going well. I spent some of my savings to help renovate their place and got myself a share of the diner because they were struggling to keep it. It was all going well and working out just fine.

I met a few people who can be considered friends, and they invited me to a casino one night. I was mesmerized. Somehow, it was like a fantasy. The place was colorful, and everybody was friendly and smiling. Everyone seemed to have a good time. I was thinking that time, “These people must have a lot of money.” They were all happy.

 

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Billy taught me poker, and it was fun! I had a few to spend and who knew if I was going to win! I thought it was beginner’s luck. I came home that night so overwhelmed with the feeling of thrill and excitement plus $5,000 richer. My wife will be happy!

Then, it went on and on. I always feel like a newbie and that there’s something I need to achieve. There are times I would win, but most of the time, I’d lose. I feel the need to win back the money I’ve lost and somehow the need to experience the feeling I’m getting whenever I sit in that casino seat. There’s something about the bright lights, beautiful women, wealthy men, wine, tobacco and everything else in it that made me come back every single time even though my wife and I have been fighting over it.

Before I knew it, it has been their years since I started gambling, and I’m now broke! My wife and I are on the brink of getting a divorce. I never realized how much we grew apart. She said she feels like I’m a complete stranger and that she doesn’t know me anymore. Then finally, she revealed she was pregnant, and she didn’t want our baby to grow up knowing a gambling addict father. Gambling addict! According to psychologists Seyed Amir Jazaeri and Mohammad Hussain Bin Habil, “Gambling disorders are highly comorbid with other mental health and substance use disorders, and a further understanding is needed of both the causes and treatment implications of this disorder.”

At first, I thought it was absurd. I thought I was just starting. I’m hardly half the age of most men in the casino. But then something stopped me. “I’m a gambling addict. I lost my savings, and I’m at the casino thrice a week. I barely spend time with my wife, and I would usually come home drunk. What was I thinking?” I said to myself.

I knew right then I had to do something. There was still hope for me. I didn’t want to grow old like one of those men I sit with every night. They may look happy, but now I realized, they were not. They were cheating on their wives and probably didn’t spend much time with their families. Yes, they had loads of money, but I say they’reusing it to ruin their lives. “What a waste.”To think I was almost a waste!

I decided to get help for my gambling addiction because I knew I never wanted to lose my wife and our baby to a temporary feeling of thrill and excitement. I have to admit it wasn’t easy. There was always the craving of holding a deck of cards, thinking of the hands and chips, the laughs and the scents. They all flashback all at once, and it often gets me very irritable.

I knew I couldn’t stay in Vegas anymore, so we decided to move to North Carolina where my parents own a ranch. It’s a beautiful place to grow a family. I know it’s not going to be easy, but I knew I had to do something before I completely lose everything. Whenever I feel the need to gamble, I think of my wife and my baby.

 

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Fighting gambling addiction is hard. “Recovery from addiction is more than possible, but requires a person’s strong commitment to change,” according to John M. Grohol, Psy.D. Support from the people around you is crucial. You also need the will and drive to stop. Acknowledge the problem and have the courage to face it. Know what you want in life and recognize the things that hinder you from getting there. Gambling addiction is hard to stop, but it’s a battle worth fighting now than to lose everything without putting up a good one.



Are You A Potential Addict?

 

Presenting the primary risk factors that are needed to be acknowledged to know whether you’re chances of becoming addicted to alcohol or drugs are high.

 

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What’s Wrong With Society

 

While people are slowly adhering to the existence and prevalence of mental illnesses such as anxiety and depression, there’s still a lot of work that should be done for de-stigmatizing the perseverance of alcohol and substance abuse. Although a lot of open-minded people are now more understanding of the history and causes of mental illnesses, people who have a dependence on alcohol or drugs are often accused of personal illnesses. This notion is due to the belief that anyone who can “turn on” their addiction can turn it off.

 

This kind of conviction is immensely damaging because it suppresses an essential dialogue about addiction which then results in people not being properly educated to the fundamentals of the illness. Lack of understanding and awareness can lead to ignorance of the fact that you’re slowly succumbing closer and closer to becoming an alcoholic or a drug addict.

 

Primary Risk Factors

 

There are three discernable risk factors which can upsurge the likelihood of alcohol or drug dependence to develop and be a full-blown addiction.

 

  1. Pre-existing Mental Illness

 

To numb the pain and to silence the voices inside your head, you quickly pop a few pills or open a bottle of whiskey. People who have PTSD, depression, and anxiety sometimes divert their attention to negative coping mechanisms as a quick fix for their extreme mental and emotional distress. Depression is a mental illness frequently co-occurring with substance use,” says Kathleen Smith, PhD, LPC.

 

If you currently have a mental disorder, you should be very mindful about the dosage of your pills and avoiding alcohol consumption. Studies show that people who have depression are three to four times more likely to become alcoholics than those who don’t have the condition.

 

  1. Impaired Stress Management Routines

 

Turns out, substance abuse, alcoholism, and chronic stress are all linked. Chronic stress can severely cause changes in the brain, making people more susceptible to addiction. Keep in mind that people manage stress differently, while others are swinging it, others may have a hard time keeping up that, for stress to be relieved, they result to excessive drinking and increased substance intake. According to Abby Aronowitz, PhD, the director of SelfHelpDirectives.com, “The key is how often you are feeling this sense of distress, how bad it gets, and how long it lasts; that is what can help determine the seriousness of your situation.”

 

Sometimes, it goes on immediate instinct to reach for a bottle of wine and drench in its goodness. Though this may not mean indulging in a glass or two of delicious chardonnay will automatically qualify you as an addict, but if you find yourself doing so in inopportune hours of the day, you have a high risk for getting addicted to its comforting, numbing feeling.

 

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  1. Family History

 

Heredity is not the only determinant of who has the highest tendency of leaning towards substance abuse; however, genetics is being accounted for relatively half the risk for addiction and alcoholism. While no particular gene has been pointed out to prompt addiction, researchers have indicated the significance of biological and genetic factors like a huge game-changer whether a person is likely to abuse alcohol or drugs.

 

Kids who grew up with members of the family suffering from addiction are potentially vulnerable to get addicted later in life. But this does not mean that you automatically get transformed into an addict just because you have siblings or parents who have been a substance or alcohol abusers. Your coping mechanism and healthy mindset still play a considerable factor in veering away from the condition.

 

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The bottom line is if you were able to pinpoint one or more risk factors currently occurring in your life and you feel like you’re slowly reaching for more pills or alcohol more often than you used to, talking to a healthcare professional is advised. According to John M. Grohol, Psy.D., Drug addiction and alcohol addiction is usually not easily overcome on one’s own. Most people who face an addiction to a substance or alcohol need additional help.” Always be mindful of what you take and never be ashamed to ask for help.

 




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