For those suffering from addiction, it can sometimes seem like a never-ending struggle, especially when you try to address it on your own. At Blair Wellness Group, we understand your frustration, and we are here to tell you that you can overcome your addiction. However, in order to do this, you need to have a thorough understanding of addiction, and what drives your specific addiction in order to address the root cause of the problem. That’s where Dr. Cassidy Blair of Blair Wellness Group comes in.
Dr. Cassidy Blair is a licensed clinical psychologist who has the experience and expertise necessary to help her patients who suffer from addiction through proven treatments. Read on to learn more about addiction, and when you’re ready to receive the help you need to finally overcome your addiction, schedule a consultation at Blair Wellness Group in Beverly Hills.
The Definition of an Addiction
In order to overcome addiction, you must first understand what an addiction is, as well as how and why it negatively affects your quality of life. An addiction, first and foremost, is a brain disease and psychiatric disorder. This means that it is not a weakness or character flaw; it is a disease and should be treated as such. Addiction is characterized by a compulsive engagement in rewarding stimuli despite the behavior having consequences. An addiction will also produce discomfort when withdrawn. Someone who has an addiction finds it very difficult to stop seeking a specific pleasure-providing stimuli, such as alcohol, drugs, or sex, even though the consequences are decreasing their quality of life.
Common Types of Addiction
Addiction comes in a wide variety of types. From alcohol or drugs to sex, social media, gambling, and more, addiction looks a bit different for everyone. However, the fundamental principles of what defines an addiction remains the same across categories.
Alcohol Use Disorder (AUD), also called alcoholism, is characterized by an addiction to alcoholic substances. AUD is often treated at Blair Wellness Group with treatments such as one-on-one sessions, family counseling and support, and other therapeutic treatments. Dr. Cassidy Blair takes the time to get to know each one of her patients to create a personalized AUD treatment plan for your unique needs.
Behavioral addictions occur when an individual is addicted to repeating a specific behavior that causes the same response in their brain as an addiction to a physical substance. Common examples of behavioral addictions include gambling, sex, social media, food, and gaming. We’ll discuss these individually in more detail below.
Drug addiction can begin through the use of prescription medication or street drugs. However, no matter how the addiction began, the side effects and compulsive behavior that drives an individual with a drug addiction are the same. Drug addiction can affect the individual both physically and mentally by rewiring how the brain works.
Food addiction is an eating disorder that occurs when an individual seeks pleasure from foods that contain fat, sugar, or salt. Food addiction can lead to heart disease, obesity, low self-esteem, depression, anxiety, and more. At Blair Wellness Group, we treat food addiction and eating disorders including: bulimia nervosa, anorexia, nervosa, binge eating disorder.
Gambling addiction is a type of behavioral addiction. While we may all enjoy a trip to the casino from time to time, a gambling addict will continue to risk their money despite significant financial losses. Those with a gambling addiction will often have strained relationships with family and friends and experience problems both at home and work due to their gambling.
Gaming addiction is a newer type of addiction that we see more of everyday. Those with a gaming disorder have a persistent need to participate in video games, regardless of the negative effect that it’s having on their lives.
Love addiction occurs when a person ignores other parts of their life, focusing all of their energy on their relationship. The individual’s job, family, and social life often suffer as a result of their unhealthy preoccupation towards the object of their affection.
Pornography addiction is characterized by a compulsive need to watch pornography. While viewing pornography can be a perfectly healthy part of an idnividual’s life, when it crosses into habitual and compulsive behavior that affects other areas of the person’s life is when it becomes a problem.
Sex addiction is often difficult to discuss. However, with the proper treatment, it’s an addiction that can be overcome, just like any other. Common types of sex addiction include addiction to sadistic or masochistic behavior, exhibitionism, prostitution, or pornography. Sex addiction will negatively affect an individual’s life and they will feel as though they do not have the control to stop it.
Social media addiction
Social media addiction is an addiction that we didn’t have 20 years ago. However, social media addiction has the same symptoms and side effects as a more traditional addiction such as drugs or alcohol. It is characterized by a compulsive need to check social media accounts, being overly concerned about likes, comments, and followers, as well as an unhealthy preoccupation with their social media persona.
What Causes Addiction
While addiction comes in many forms, the root cause and driving force behind addictive behavior is commonly the same across categories. Someone with a physical or behavioral addiction seeks pleasure through stimuli. Whether that stimuli is alcohol, social media, or gambling, it changes the way that the reward center of your brain works.
While addiction is a complex medical disorder, those who are predisposed often suffer from anxiety or depression. When they first engage with an addictive substance or behavior, it triggers a release of dopamine. This encourages the individual to repeat the behavior, which leads to the forming of an addiction.
Dr. Cassidy Blair of Blair Wellness Group is a licensed clinical psychologist in Beverly Hills who understands how addiction works, and has the knowledge and experience to help you address your addiction and overcome it once and for all. Offering a wide range of addiction treatments, Dr. Cassidy Blair will create a customized plan that will help you address your specific addiction, as well as the underlying cause. Contact Blair Wellness Group today to schedule a consultation, and get on your way to living a happy, healthy, addiction-free life.