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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Addiction Thesis

Addiction is the compulsion to do something. There are two major types of addiction mental/psychological and physical/chemical.

I) Physical dependency ~ Is when a person has a chemical addiction to something normally to induce pleasure. Often the substance has withdrawal effects. After some time the substance is used to relieve the anxiety caused by the absence of the chemical. People explain that coming off the “high” makes them feel so low that they want more just to feel normal.

A) Alcohol ~Approximately 14 million Americans (7.4%) suffer from alcohol abuse or addiction.

Alcoholism can:

1) Reduce life expectancy by 10 to 15 years.

2) Destroy brain cells, possibly leading to brain damage.

3) Hinders the ability to retrieve, consolidate, and process information.

4) Can affect cognitive abilities.

5) Interfere with the oxygen supply of the brain causing a blackout when totally drunk.

6) Inflame or cause cancer in the mouth, esophagus, and stomach.

7) Produce irregular heartbeats, high-blood pressure, and heart attacks.

8) Harm vision.

9) Damage sexual function.

10) Can cause skin and pancreatic disorders, weaken the bones and muscles.

Most alcoholics struggle with it their entire life. Even one drink can cause an alcoholic to become addicted even if they have been sober for twenty years.

B) Nicotine ~ This addictive drug found in tobacco gives a person pleasure and euphoria by increasing the levels of dopamine within the reward circuits in the brain. It causes a discharge of epinephrine which stimulates the central nervous system and endocrine glands, which causes a sudden release of glucose. Although more addictive then cocaine and heroin the withdrawals are less severe. 70.3 million people in the US use some form of nicotine at least once a month.

The following can occur with the addiction.

1) Cancer (mouth, lungs, throat, gums, tongue)

2) Cardiovascular diseases

3) Respiratory diseases

4) Pregnancy problems

5) Can cause anger, hostility, and aggression.

Effects of nicotine can last up to a year after quitting. Nicotine can be addicted from one use.

C) Illegal Drugs (Cocaine, Heroin, Speed etc) 19.5 million people over the age of 12 use illegal drugs in the US. 19,000 die each year because of illegal drug use. Cause psychoactive effects and vary depending on the drug on the side effects.

D) Caffeine ~ You get it in soda and coffee.

E) Physiological tolerance drugs ~ Non addictive but abused includes laxatives, antidepressants, and nasal decongestants.

Normal treatments might include medical substitutes, psychological, behavioral, and social help. If you have an addiction and want to quit talk to your doctor. Only he can make a schedule for you to your unique situation.

II) Psychological dependency ~ dependency of the mind, that can have psychological withdrawal symptoms. Cravings, irritability, insomnia, depression, anorexia, anger can all be symptoms to name a few. Often people have emotional and social interaction problems.

A) Gambling

B) Internet addiction disorder

C) Computer addiction

D) Online Gaming (such as WoW, D&D online etc)

E) Sexual addiction (compulsive sexual behavior) ~ Continuing behavior despite adverse consequences, such as loss of health, job, relationship; Obsession with the activity.

F) Pornography addiction ~ obsessive viewing, reading, and thinking about pornography.

G) Eating disorders (Anorexia nervosa , Bulimia nervosa and Binge eating )

H) Self-injury disorder (cutting)

I) Work

J) Working out (Exercise)

K) Kleptomania

L) Trichotillomania (impulse control disorder)

M) Anxiety disorder

The good news is that psychological dependency disorders can be treated easier and better then chemical. However since it is within you it is something you might have to deal with for the rest of your life. The important part is getting the medical help you need and learning how to handle the issue.

draconis
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks more to come too. I hope to get as much factual information out there for two main reason.

1) It can help people that search out that type of information.

2) I can quickly find answers to things that will come up over and over again.

draconis
 

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This is very good. I have a father that was an alcoholic for years and what you write above is so true. He hopefully has beaten it after 30 years but it is just one day at a time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
My father-in-law has been battling it for years 2 sober then 1 day drank then 18 years sober fought it for 2 months and has been sober again for almost a year. It is hard in AA to give up a 18 year medallian for a one day coin. I have respect for those that beat it.

draconis
 

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Whether the abuser uses chemical or non chemical means, they are all doing the same thing- increasing the availability of neuro chemicals- norepinephrine, serotonin and especially dopamine which all act as mood elevators.

For people who do not suffer from mood disorders such as depression and anxiety, it is the state of feeling "better than normal" that first attracts them to the mood elevating stimulant.

Because the brain is very efficient, if it sees that the reuptake of the neurochemicals is being deactivated artificially, it will shut down its own natural ability to produce these chemicals. When the artificial means of mood elevation is stopped, it can take days or weeks for the brain to readjust itself back to normal and this causes the person to feel awful and amplifies his need to stabilize himself by partaking in the mood elevating activity again. What happens is he is playing a game with his brain that he cannot win. The more the activity he partakes in the more the brain shuts down its own natural processes and the worse the person feels when the mood elevating activity is stopped.

With chemicals this can be a cycle that is very hard to break because of the fast action of the mood effects of the substance. Nicotine, meth, heroin, cocaine and others hits the brain within seconds. The faster the mood is elevated the quicker the brain shuts down it's own mood elevating processes.

For people with mood disorders the goal is not necessarily to feel better than normal but rather just to feel normal. Imagine feeling down and sad all your life. The first time you partake in a mood elevating activity it is like a miracle because you suddenly have forced your brain to do what it cannot do on it's own, use the available mood elevating neurochemicals. Of course this feeling normal is arguably better for the mood depressed person than feeling high is for the non mood disordered person. This is why those who are suffering from various mood disorders become so heavily addicted to mood elevating activities and why it is much more difficult for them to stop the activity when it begins to threaten their well being.
 

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Addiction Thesis

Addiction is the compulsion to do something. There are two major types of addiction mental/psychological and physical/chemical.

I) Physical dependency ~ Is when a person has a chemical addiction to something normally to induce pleasure. Often the substance has withdrawal effects. After some time the substance is used to relieve the anxiety caused by the absence of the chemical. People explain that coming off the “high” makes them feel so low that they want more just to feel normal.

A) Alcohol ~Approximately 14 million Americans (7.4%) suffer from alcohol abuse or addiction.

Alcoholism can:

1) Reduce life expectancy by 10 to 15 years.

2) Destroy brain cells, possibly leading to brain damage.

3) Hinders the ability to retrieve, consolidate, and process information.

4) Can affect cognitive abilities.

5) Interfere with the oxygen supply of the brain causing a blackout when totally drunk.

6) Inflame or cause cancer in the mouth, esophagus, and stomach.

7) Produce irregular heartbeats, high-blood pressure, and heart attacks.

8) Harm vision.

9) Damage sexual function.

10) Can cause skin and pancreatic disorders, weaken the bones and muscles.

Most alcoholics struggle with it their entire life. Even one drink can cause an alcoholic to become addicted even if they have been sober for twenty years.

B) Nicotine ~ This addictive drug found in tobacco gives a person pleasure and euphoria by increasing the levels of dopamine within the reward circuits in the brain. It causes a discharge of epinephrine which stimulates the central nervous system and endocrine glands, which causes a sudden release of glucose. Although more addictive then cocaine and heroin the withdrawals are less severe. 70.3 million people in the US use some form of nicotine at least once a month.

The following can occur with the addiction.

1) Cancer (mouth, lungs, throat, gums, tongue)

2) Cardiovascular diseases

3) Respiratory diseases

4) Pregnancy problems

5) Can cause anger, hostility, and aggression.

Effects of nicotine can last up to a year after quitting. Nicotine can be addicted from one use.

C) Illegal Drugs (Cocaine, Heroin, Speed etc) 19.5 million people over the age of 12 use illegal drugs in the US. 19,000 die each year because of illegal drug use. Cause psychoactive effects and vary depending on the drug on the side effects.

D) Caffeine ~ You get it in soda and coffee.

E) Physiological tolerance drugs ~ Non addictive but abused includes laxatives, antidepressants, and nasal decongestants.

Normal treatments might include medical substitutes, psychological, behavioral, and social help. If you have an addiction and want to quit talk to your doctor. Only he can make a schedule for you to your unique situation.

II) Psychological dependency ~ dependency of the mind, that can have psychological withdrawal symptoms. Cravings, irritability, insomnia, depression, anorexia, anger can all be symptoms to name a few. Often people have emotional and social interaction problems.

A) Gambling

B) Internet addiction disorder

C) Computer addiction

D) Online Gaming (such as WoW, D&D online etc)

E) Sexual addiction (compulsive sexual behavior) ~ Continuing behavior despite adverse consequences, such as loss of health, job, relationship; Obsession with the activity.

F) Pornography addiction ~ obsessive viewing, reading, and thinking about pornography.

G) Eating disorders (Anorexia nervosa , Bulimia nervosa and Binge eating )

H) Self-injury disorder (cutting)

I) Work

J) Working out (Exercise)

K) Kleptomania

L) Trichotillomania (impulse control disorder)

M) Anxiety disorder

The good news is that psychological dependency disorders can be treated easier and better then chemical. However since it is within you it is something you might have to deal with for the rest of your life. The important part is getting the medical help you need and learning how to handle the issue.

draconis


Hi! a challenge to your views ?

How do you define and what category is the "functioning" alchoholic? My seperated partner has drank regularly every day, with the odd break in drinking , he never missed work
he never got hung over, or sick... ( drank for over 30 years) consistant and habitual

However I have noticed his cognitive impairment has steadily gotten worse over the years, in fact so bad that I find it extremely difficult to have a conversation with him in great depth, ( he of course is oblivious to this),

His life also has become so small.. and what i mean by that is everything is viewed as threat to him, he never has anything nice to say about anybody, his glass is always have empty
he is not happy, but i think a great deal of his problem is cognitive, his negativity is an every day thing wether he drinks or not
 
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