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Psychological Addiction: Meaning, Symptoms, Treatment

Cravings are a key factor in psychological addictions, so it’s important for you to understand what they are. A craving is an intense desire for something and is one of the hallmarks of psychological dependence. The first step to getting clean is realizing — and admitting — that you have a substance abuse problem.

What drugs cause a physical dependence?

Drugs known to produce physical dependence are the opiates (i.e., opium and its derivatives) and central-nervous-system depressants such as barbiturates and alcohol.

Depression is a common withdrawal effect of dependence and drug addiction. In general, mood swings (anger, sadness, etc.) are part of the withdrawal process. Depression is defined as constant feelings of sadness and loss of interest in activities you used to enjoy.

Characteristics of Psychological Dependence

When dependence turns into addiction it’s a condition that must be monitored for life. Considering that half of the people with a substance use disorder suffer from a mental illness, it’s likely symptoms of psychological dependence will emerge over time. According to the World Health Organization , substance abuse is when a person uses psychoactive drugs in a way that could harm them. psychological dependence on alcohol Hence, those with a substance use disorder suffer from issues with a physical dependence and a psychological dependence. Some addiction therapists believe psychological dependence is tougher to quit and requires more extensive aftercare. Once the substances are out of the body, and the body begins to heal, the person may continue to suffer from the psychological consequences.

  • One might lead to another, which is why it’s important to treat both as they appear.
  • This tends to happen when a person has become completely dependent on the drug and cannot stop using it.
  • Your confusion is understandable as alcohol use disorder can be BOTH a habitual and a chemical addiction.
  • When you forfeit activities that were usually enjoyed before drug use, it is an implication of the social symptoms of an addict.
  • There is a lot of confusion surrounding physical dependence and psychological dependence.
  • These may include adventure therapy, art therapy, equine therapy, holistic therapies, and more.

Contact us now to see how we can help you or a loved one overcome chemical dependency. Depression, feelings of hopelessness, and lack of interest in regular activities. If you or a loved one are going through any of these conditions, do not go through it alone. Feel free to contact us at Sana Lake Recovery Center for all your recovery needs. All of the information on this page has been reviewed and verified by a certified addiction professional.

Signs and Symptoms of a Physical Dependence

If someone is experiencing any of these symptoms, they have likely become psychologically addicted to a substance. Paul had knee surgery a few months ago and has a prescription for painkillers, but he sometimes takes a few more pills than he’s supposed to take. Since Paul has a prescription, he doesn’t think he has a substance abuse problem.

Both can be extremely problematic and will only worsen through addiction. If you or a loved one is struggling with a drug or alcohol addiction, its time to get help. Recognizing that many factors are involved in addictive behavior may help breed compassion as you assist a friend or family member on their road to recovery. Remember that addiction is treatable, and the more you understand the disease, the more you may be able to support a loved one as they go through treatment.

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