What Are Different Types of Addictions

Heroin drug preparation with lighter

Addiction is an intricate disease but almost 100 years of scientific research have allowed for deeper insights into the ways they work. Its work has triggered significant changes to our perception and understanding of addiction and now addiction can also be described as the brain stitch of our minds and not an individual failure or choice. There are, however, different types of addictions.

Most of us think about addiction but it is not just addictions. Researchers say addiction to a certain substance is very similar to compulsions to conduct activities like gambling and shopping.

What is Addiction?

Among all people, ages 15 to 64 who have been drugged and over 30 million suffer from substance misuse. Substance use disorders can be more severe and more serious than the addiction itself. Unlike drug abuse, substance use disorder encompasses many more disorders than just addiction and drugs. Common behaviors such as shopping, gaming, exercise, or sports can also be considered addictions.

Internet Addiction

Can you live without wires? Internet addiction is not commonly seen by psychiatrists. However, it can cause problems in certain people involving lapsed control or bad results both at work and in their homes. The research published at the 2014 American Psychiatric Association’s annual meeting showed changes in brains detected via neuroimaging. The Internet can take 11 hours a day for a typical Internet addiction. Studies show internet usage is the biggest problem among people with Internet addictions.

Physical Addiction

As mentioned in previous paragraphs, addiction cases are different for different people and are very similar. This can be seen with various kinds of physically destructive behavior. Various kinds of addictive behavior can be impacted by various factors including genetics, environmental circumstances, and genetic background. Regardless of what type of addiction there can be different specifics.

Plastic Surgery Addiction

To change the appearance, a person goes under the knife again. Many people who have a tendency towards cosmetic surgical procedures will go from doctor to doctor until they are able to find a surgeon who agrees to treat them. In reality, this population has more body dysmorphic disorders and cosmetic surgery addiction problems.

The International OCD Foundation says that a quarter if not half the population suffers from body dysmorphic diseases, which have been found in plastic surgery cases. Some individuals who are unable to stand up to the pressure of their appearance are afraid of being deformed.

Sex Addiction

Do sex cravings really have an impact on sex addicts? Although the substance has no legal status, it can be treated with a variety of drugs, the APA considered the inclusion of addictive sexual behavior in the fifth edition of its Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders under the heading ” Hypersexual behaviors. In addition, many sex addiction patients report very similar effects to traditional addiction.

Shopping Addiction

Shopping: Another activity that causes an imbalance is a condition of impulse control and not a true addiction. Why do people feel guilty after buying something? Does your wardrobe have prices? You could be an avid shopping fan, is that right? Studies show that compulsive shopping has a higher impact on women than men and this is an enormous financial risk for the person. What is the best way to ask for help? Treatment is often based on counseling and behavioral therapy.

Gambling Addiction

Do you always try and beat the odds a lot? Of all behavioral addictions, gambling addiction combines with drugs or alcohol addiction. A new APA report categorizes gambling disorders as addictive diseases. Study shows that gaming addictions are lowering the brain area of drug addiction and that gambling disorders typically include therapy for drug addiction.

Video Game Addiction

Are you still not getting the consoles? Video game addiction can occur in boys, especially in men and a survey of over half of teens found that video games can be addictive (as the numbers have soared) and that they can even become addictive when played in a game. Treatments for addictive gaming include counseling and behavior change.

How to Identify Addiction?

Drug addiction changes the body, specifically the brain, and can have visible physical side effects. Behavioral addiction does not exhibit the same physical symptoms that accompany drug and alcohol addiction or substance abuse. 

Some signs of addiction that aren’t physical include: Significant amount of time spent using substance or engaging in the behavior Inability to quit using or engaging in the behavior Inability to fulfill obligations at school, work, or home relationships. Despite the specific nature of addiction, there is often a similar pattern of psychological, physical, or mental activity. However, addiction varies from person to person because there is no common underlying cause and the cause is different.

Addictive Behavior

Examples of a person who has exhibited a type of dependence on substances may also be asymptomatic. Other examples of a symptom of addictive behavior could include increased vulnerability and illness, increased distraction or difficulty focusing, and occurrence of compulsive behavior. This is a good reason to remember the different ways addiction can impact someone else as it is so widely distributed.

There are many similarities between substance addiction and behavioral addiction. Some of the similarities include the excitement or “high” resulting from use or behavior, craving the “high”, development of tolerance leading to increased use or repeated behavior, loss of control, and psychological and physical withdrawal symptoms.

Recovery Methods for Different Addictions

Although all common forms of addiction have their specific characteristics, they typically follow the same recovery process. In general, addictions are chronic, but they generally require quality and constant medical care in ensuring a good recovery. Recovery from addiction begins with a person recognizing the extent of their addictions. Recovery options include the treatments listed below.

Rehabilitation Programs

Rehab services are also important for addiction treatment. They help people maintain a drug-free and addiction-free status to help them function effectively throughout their entire life span and regain control over everything. Rehab usually takes place within rehab facilities with these programs being short-term or longer-term. Many treatment centers offer outpatient and inpatient rehabilitation.

Counseling and Behavioral Therapy

Counseling and behavioral therapies are the primary treatments after detoxification is performed. Depending upon patient needs, therapy may be offered individually, in groups, or with family. The therapist begins to take a lot of intense classes in just a few weeks to months. However, intensity typically decreases as conditions improve with each new treatment.

Categories of Addiction

Addictions are divided into two types: Although addiction is a wide variety, it can be broadly divided into two categories. Such kinds of addiction include:

Physical Addiction

Chemical addictions or chemical dependence are different kinds of addictions that involve the use and abuse of various drug products and services. It includes all kinds of addictive substances and drug abuse disorders. Some physically addictive examples of these are meth, coca, and opioids (prescription and otherwise). Physical addiction also encapsulates other types of addictions such as food or alcohol addictions.

Behavioral Addiction

An addictive behavior type is a unified form of addiction that is based on the use of a definite set of behaviors that engage people despite no benefits or consequences. Psychological addiction remains a persistent issue even after adverse consequences are encountered by some. Examples of behavioral addiction include games or shop purchases.

Behavioral addictions are those not involving a substance. This type of addiction can be an impulse control disorder as defined in the DSM-IV-TR or an addiction identified by an addiction professional. Behavioral addictions outside of the DSM-5 are controversial and many don’t feel they meet the requirement of being an official addiction.


A person can be addicted to behaviors just as seriously as one can be addicted to substances such as alcohol or hard drugs. The addictive behaviors that result from both types of addiction can have serious negative consequences though, from all that comes with a substance use disorder to the perils of a gambling addiction, or even compulsive shopping and sexual behavior to an unhealthy degree. Addiction is a complex disease.

Emmaus Medical & Counseling provides a variety of addiction treatment programs. Our aim is to develop a strong connection with our patients so they can open up about their true feelings. With the advance techniques and methods of our treatment programs, we are able to provide effective remedies for substance abusers. Contact us today and book an appointment!

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