Causes of Addiction

There are no specific causes of any addiction aside from use of a substance or activity, and there is no way to predict who will become dependent on use.

Any substance or activity that has the capacity to be pleasurable can provide the conditions for addiction.

All addictions impact various neural circuits of the brain, including those related to reward, motivation, and memory.

Recent posts on Addiction

Halloween and Fancy Dress

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on October 27, 2016 in In Excess
Halloween is around the corner and many people will be in fancy dress on October 31st. But what do we know about the psychology of dressing up more generally?
ID 36918169 © Stanimir Stoev |

Vote Yes for Medical or Recreational Marijuana Legalization

We have to think about patient choice as well as public health and safety when deciding what to do about marijuana legalization.
Source: David Wiss

Nutrition in Recovery from Addiction

By Nicole Avena Ph.D. on October 26, 2016 in Food Junkie
From a public health perspective, the addiction problem appears to be relentless with substances of abuse increasing in potency. Meanwhile highly accessible and highly palatable fo
ID 48826534 © Angelo Cordeschi |

Pharmaceutical Lobbyists Are Fighting Pricing Regulations

By Richard Taite on October 25, 2016 in Ending Addiction for Good
The Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), has long been one of the biggest and most powerful lobbies in Washington.

Promising to Stop Addictive Behavior Is a Very Bad Idea

By Lance Dodes M.D. on October 24, 2016 in The Heart of Addiction
It's common for people suffering with an addiction to tell others, or even themselves, "I promise I'll stop (my addictive behavior)." But it's a disaster waiting to happen.

Misuse of Stimulants by College Students

Nonmedical use of prescription stimulants by college students is common. Students who misuse these drugs have a higher prevalence of alcohol use disorder and conduct disorder.

It's Time to Legalize Marijuana: A Public Health Perspective

Whether it's legal or not, kids are going to use cannabis. Do we really want them to see the police as the enemy and throw them in jail?
ID 65746543 © Leck |

How Our Next President Could Fight the Opioid Epidemic

In this election cycle, ending the opioid epidemic comes down to technique.
ID 7810910 © Elena Elisseeva |

How and Why You Should Keep Your Temper in Check

By Richard Taite on October 21, 2016 in Ending Addiction for Good
At the end of the day we are human, not perfect, and it is okay to make mistakes so long as we learn from them and try to do better.

Cheating? But It Was Just a Webcam!

As our lives have become increasingly digital, the once-clear line between monogamy and infidelity has blurred.

Prescription Drug Abuse and the Physician Gatekeeper

Many medications can be abused. Prescribing doctors are gatekeepers who separate legitimate use from abuse. However, this distinction is becoming less clear.
Kasia Bialasiewicz/BigStock

Meditation Helps Eating Disorder Recovery

By Greta Gleissner LCSW on October 18, 2016 in Bottom's Up
When people are recovering from an eating disorder, anxiety and stress can cause them to react through harmful behaviors. Meditation is crucial to a healthy recovery.

Six Reasons Teens Turn to Drugs

There comes a time in a teen’s life where he or she is faced with the decision to take a drug. The power of that one decision is oftentimes underestimated.

Medical Marijuana and Pregnancy

By Ira J. Chasnoff M.D. on October 15, 2016 in Aristotle's Child
Should a doctor do a pregnancy test before prescribing marijuana to a woman of childbearing age?
ID 54016972 © Theerapol |

Kratom Needs to Be Researched Before It’s a Schedule 1 Drug

Let’s limit the access children have to the drug and engage in serious research so that we know exactly what we’re looking at.
ID 65746566 © Leck |

The DEA is Lowering Opioid Production in the U.S

By Richard Taite on October 14, 2016 in Ending Addiction for Good
The DEA’s decision to limit the amount of opioid painkillers produced in the United States is a prudent step.

Do Shame & "Rock Bottom" Decrease Dysregulated Behavior? No!

Do shaming and "rock bottom" help decrease dysregulated behavior? No! In fact, they can actually do the opposite.

Breaking the Trance

By The Book Brigade on October 13, 2016 in The Author Speaks
There are practical strategies parents can take to control children’s overuse of screen media.

Think Twice Before Giving Medical Marijuana to Your Pet

By Hal Herzog Ph.D. on October 12, 2016 in Animals and Us
It would be nice to think medical marijuana could cure epilepsy in dogs and anxiety in cats. But there are problems with the use of cannabis in veterinary medicine.

Connecting Dots Between The Opioid Epidemic and Philanthropy

By Allen J Frances M.D. on October 12, 2016 in Saving Normal
The Sackler family earned a fortune promoting the opioid epidemic and should devote their philanthropy to helping the millions of Americans who have been harmed by it.

This Could Be the Biggest Threat to Your Relationship

It's often referred to as "the invisible addiction."

5 Elements of Desire Formation

By Shahram Heshmat Ph.D. on October 10, 2016 in Science of Choice
Whether people will give in to the desire in any given time depends on two things: the strength of the desire and the strength of the self to resist the urge.

Middle America and the Opioid Addiction Epidemic

The opioid addiction epidemic is raging through middle America, and its families.

Kratom:The Legal High That Treats Chronic Pain and Addiction

By Mark Borigini M.D. on October 08, 2016 in Overcoming Pain
A motley crew consisting of haggard-looking scientists in their white coats and millennials with runny noses, patiently standing in the queue at the local GNC.
ID 28569047 © Sarra22 |

Legalizing Marijuana in California

By Richard Taite on October 07, 2016 in Ending Addiction for Good
If you treat young people with respect and give them good information, the likelihood is greater that they will make healthy choices.
ID 4252401 © Dana Rothstein |

Here’s How the High Holidays Can Support Your Recovery

If you think seeing your family all together will prompt you to use, give yourself a pass from the occasion guilt-free.

How Cocaine-Rush Feelings Are Stimulated on "The Bachelor"

Here are five examples of ways in which the scripting of reality TV shows enhances “cocaine-rush” feelings in new relationships.

Can Cycling Be Addictive?

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on October 06, 2016 in In Excess
There has been an increasing amount of research into exercise addiction and it's sub-types. One such type is 'cycling addiction' but can it really be classed as an addiction?

What Is the Link Between Alcohol and Creative Genius?

By Tom Shroder on October 05, 2016 in Acid Test
My author grandfather said he couldn't write when he wasn't drinking. It might have won him a Pulitzer Prize. It definitely killed him.