What Addiction Actually Is and How It Works
February 9th, 2015
We often hear the word “addiction” in so many contexts that we have gotten too used to it to actually understand it. Addiction comes in many shapes (from alcohol or drug addiction to addiction to Facebook and gambling) and it can be extremely destructive both for those who suffer from it and for those around them. What is addiction, actually? How does it work? How does one become addicted and, even more importantly, how does one quit an addiction?
Put in very simple terms, addiction makes us seek what pleases us (cocaine, heroin, alcohol, gambling, video games, Likes on Facebook and so on) and to go to large extents to obtain them. Addiction in all its forms is considered to be a brain disease precisely because it changes the brain. When you feed your body with a certain addictive substance (or experience, such as in the case of gambling), it will create more dopamine, which makes you feel euphoric.
You will feel this way once, twice and maybe even 10 times but once the tolerance of the body/brain has been beaten, it will start asking for more of that substance or experience – and this is where addiction is installed.
Some people are more vulnerable to developing certain kinds of addictions than others. People suffering with depression, large exposure to that substance or experience in the family and in the close community, stress, anxiety and a series of other factors can influence the level at which one person can become addicted to something.
Addiction can be cured, but the person who is addicted has to search for help. Nobody else can do this in your place: regardless of the substance you are addicted to, you will have to be the one searching for specialized help. There are many methods out there that help addicted people get rid of their addiction and become free again – all you need to start is go and ask for help.