Compulsive and Addictive Behaviors

Addiction is not limited to biochemical substances such as cocaine, alcohol, inhalants, or nicotine. It is increasingly possible for people to experience so-called behavioral addictions. Activities such as gambling, eating, pornography viewing, and playing video games are particularly conducive to addiction because they provide the opportunity for immediate reward. The fast feedback that occurs in a gambling setting can quickly turn a pastime into a compulsive pursuit of reward, where one can't voluntarily disengage from the activity and harmful consequences occur-from losing large amounts of money to disruption of relationships.

Similarly, the frequent cell phone texting that many young people do, in which they send and receive hundreds of messages a day, contains the conditions for addiction. Many observers contend that it is especially problematic because it can interfere with one of the major tasks of development-developing effective mechanisms of impulse control.

Recent posts on Addiction

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By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D. on September 26, 2016 in Mental Wealth
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The Murder Market

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on September 25, 2016 in Shadow Boxing
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By Victoria L. Dunckley M.D. on September 24, 2016 in Mental Wealth
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ID 1563078 © Rayna Canedy | Dreamstime.com

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By Richard Taite on September 23, 2016 in Ending Addiction for Good
A healthy concern for your well-being can make you more likely to anticipate and effectively head-off possible threats.

Poetry as an Addiction

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on September 22, 2016 in In Excess
It was recently argued that the act of writing poetry can potentially meet some of the criteria for addiction and has been termed 'poesegraphilia.' This post takes a closer look.

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By Robert T Muller Ph.D. on September 21, 2016 in Talking About Trauma
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By Christopher Bergland on September 20, 2016 in The Athlete's Way
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By Dan Mager MSW on September 19, 2016 in Some Assembly Required
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By Sam Louie MA, LMHC on September 19, 2016 in Minority Report
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By Linda Esposito LCSW on September 19, 2016 in From Anxiety to Zen
Do you control, nurture, and protect your partner? Maybe it's time to let go.
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By Richard Taite on September 16, 2016 in Ending Addiction for Good
There’s little more tempting than a quick and easy solution to our problems.

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By Ann Smith on September 16, 2016 in Healthy Connections
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Can Thumb Sucking Be Addictive?

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on September 15, 2016 in In Excess
Thumb sucking is a common behavior in young children but a small minority carry on the behavior into their adulthood. Is this problematic and could it be described as addictive?
Pixabay, labeled for reuse

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By Michael Aaron, Ph.D. on September 14, 2016 in Standard Deviations
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The Lobby Against Medical Marijuana

By Allen J Frances M.D. on September 13, 2016 in Saving Normal
Protecting profit against patient welfare
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By Greta Gleissner LCSW on September 12, 2016 in Bottom's Up
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By Denise R Friedman Ph.D. on September 10, 2016 in Always More to Learn
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By Richard Taite on September 09, 2016 in Ending Addiction for Good
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By Joye Swan Ph.D. on September 08, 2016 in Up Close and Personal
"Sex addiction" doesn't pass muster in medical research, but you'd never know it by those benefiting from keeping it in the public discourse.

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By Robert T Muller Ph.D. on September 07, 2016 in Talking About Trauma
This global non-profit movement is dedicated to providing support for those struggling with mental illness, suicide, addiction, and self-injury.

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By Robert J King Ph.D. on September 07, 2016 in Hive Mind
The U.K. press recently picked up our paper about violence and gambling. Here's why they (and other traits) tend to go together and why this matters.

Is the Concept of "Internet Addiction" a Misnomer?

By Mark D. Griffiths Ph.D. on September 07, 2016 in In Excess
Internet addiction is now a widely studied phenomenon. However most research shows that a minority of people have addictions on the internet but rarely to it.

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By Adi Jaffe Ph.D. on September 06, 2016 in All About Addiction
Many parents want to help solve their children's substance use problems. Approaching it from the "drug war" angle didn't prove useful for the U.S. and it won't work at home.
freeimages.com/Steve Knight

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By Nicole Avena Ph.D. on September 06, 2016 in Food Junkie
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By Temma Ehrenfeld on September 06, 2016 in Open Gently
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By Nir Eyal on September 06, 2016 in Automatic You
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