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What is a Behavior Addiction?

What is a Behavior Addiction?

Every day, people engage in behaviors with different consequences. A behavior that is repeated without the ability to stop despite negative consequences can become an addiction. When an individual is hungry, he or she eats and stops when he or she is full. If the person continues to eat when he or she is not hungry or does not have the self-control to limit the amount of food, he or she could develop a behavior addiction.

A person with a behavior addiction cannot stop the behavior, even when his or her physical or mental health is negatively affected. People enjoy eating, shopping, gambling, gaming, or exercising. If any of those behaviors are endangering a person’s mental or physical health, or causing significant relationship problems, he or she has a behavior addiction. Any type of behavior addiction can cause complications at home and interferes with work.

An addiction to shopping interferes with relationships, savings, and responsibilities. When you have an addiction to shopping, the convenience of the Internet can lead to unnecessary spending. Some people experience gratification when shopping or have a mental health condition that influences the urge to shop. Instead of buying only what is needed, the craving to buy things you want can be too strong to resist.

In some ways, a gambling addiction is similar to a shopping addiction. A person with a gambling addiction cannot stop gambling, even when savings accounts are drained. A gambling addiction is harmful to relationships because that becomes a priority over responsibilities. Spending valuable time with family and friends takes a backseat to gambling. A gambling addiction can lead to the loss of a house or job, and cause bankruptcy.

Exercising is a healthy activity. When a person develops an exercising addiction, he or she has the inability to stop, even when experiencing physical or mental health complications. Exercise becomes a problem when relationships are affected and work is disrupted.

When any behavior disrupts family relationships and compromises friendships or leads to severe financial problems, you should seek help from a professional who can suggest the appropriate treatment. A person can recover from a behavior addiction with the assistance of therapy and counseling to work on behavior modification.  

The Center for Professional Recovery offers the Professional Treatment Program, designed specifically to address the unique needs of professionals, like first-responders. Our programs are designed to treat co-occurring disorders which might arise and restore first-responders in a way which allows them to return to work and continue taking care of their mental health. For information on our full continuum of care for professionals, call us today: (855) 422-4129

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